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Dean Klein

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County Combats Chronic Homelessness

Fairfax County joins national effort to house ‘most vulnerable.’

Fewer families experienced homelessness in Fairfax County this year, a 16 percent decline stemming largely from the County’s “housing first” focus, which rapidly identifies housing for those living on the edge. But the number of chronic homeless—the most entrenched street dwellers and vulnerable individuals—jumped 20 percent this year. According to the September report released by the Fairfax County Office to Prevent and End Homelessness (OPEH), 51 percent of single homeless individuals (353 people) were identified as chronically homeless in 2012, compared to 39 percent in 2011. An additional 43 adults were counted as unsheltered in 2012 over the previous year.


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