|NEWS||Improving and Protecting the Health, Well-Being
and Self-Reliance of All Montanans.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 20, 2011
Montana Memorial for the Homeless is
Wednesday at Women’s Park
WHO: State and local officials and community members will gather to show their respect for those
who have lost their lives in Montana because they lived without homes.
WHAT: Annual Montana Memorial for the Homeless
WHEN: Wednesday, December 21, 2011, noon to 1 p.m.
WHERE: Women’s Park, Helena
KEY FACTS FROM THE MONTANA COALITION FOR THE HOMELESS:
- The 2011 Montana homeless survey was conducted on January 26, 2011 by the Montana Continuum of Care Coalition and Human Resource Development Councils, and sponsored by the Department of Public Health and Human Services. The survey identified persons living in conditions of homelessness (sheltered and unsheltered), or of being at high risk of becoming homeless. The date is mandated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, so that surveys across the nation take place during the last week in January.
- Survey results show that over the past six years an average of 387 people in Helena have been identified during the annual homeless survey. However, 2011 for Helena was higher than the average with 485 people identified. Not everyone identified by the survey is literally homeless, but many are at high risk of losing their homes, are doubled or tripled up, living in their cars or other places unsuited to human habitation.
- In 2011, at least 37 people died statewide because they have lived without homes, up from 33 in 2010. Since no one is formally tracking those who die as a result of living without homes, the number is likely much higher.
- The average age of death for people who have lived without homes is age 48, compared to 77 for other Montanans.
- The Montana Memorial for the Homeless is designed to raise awareness of the issue of homelessness in Montana. The event is held every year on the first day of winter, on the shortest day and longest night of the year.
- The Montana Coalition for the Homeless is a group of individuals from across the state who have come together to address homelessness in Montana.