LANE COUNTY, Ore. -- The number of people without homes continues to rise in Lane County, growing by 500 in just a year, according to a new report.
Every year in January, the Lane County Human Services Division conducts a one-night Homeless Point in Time (PIT) Count. It's a three-part survey required by the Department of Housing and Urban Development and Oregon Housing and Community Services, which provides funding for housing and services related to homelessness.
Chase Jones, a man living on the streets on downtown Eugene, said he thinks part of the reason for the increase is because of rising rent costs. Jones said he's not surprised to hear there are five hundred more people this year who don't have homes, compared to just a year ago.
FULL REPORT: 2019 Homeless Point in Time Count
The 2019 report showed 2,165 people were counted. The Lane County Human Services division said 1,633 of those were unsheltered and 411 unsheltered people were staying in programs like dusk to dawn and opportunity village that provide a safe place to sleep but don't meet the definition of shelter.
Based on the count, 426 were staying in emergency shelter and 106 were in transitional housing.
For the 2019 count, unsheltered count locations included the streets, under bridges, parks and other places not meant for human habitation, as well as food pantries, day access centers, schools, churches, emergency shelters, and transitional housing programs.
The yearly report is used year-round by planning boards, nonprofits, community organizations and policy makers on local, state and federal levels to inform their work and understand trends over time.