The New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness (NHCEH) released its annual report, The State of Homelessness in New Hampshire, today, providing an analysis of statewide trends in homelessness based on available data for 2022. The report finds a marked increase in homelessness overall from 2021 to 2022 in New Hampshire and identifies significant increases in both chronic and unsheltered homelessness in the state.
“This report reveals concerning trends that should serve as an urgent call to action to increase supports that can resolve and prevent homeless experiences,” said Jennifer Chisholm, executive director of the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness. “The decrease in homelessness in 2021 reflected the positive effect that Federal pandemic-related aid programs had in helping people maintain shelter in the state, so we know successful interventions exist to help manage this public health crisis.”
The State of Homelessness in New Hampshire annual report utilizes a cross-section of data sources to support the analysis of homelessness in the state. The two primary data sources are the annual Point-in-Time (PIT) Count, which is conducted annually in a single 24-hour period in the last week in January, and the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), which is a HUD-mandated reporting tool used to collect client-level data from all state and federally funded homeless service programs. Analyzing these two data sources together helps to provide insight into statewide trends in homelessness in New Hampshire.
Data from PIT and HMIS document concerning trends in the increase of unsheltered homelessness. PIT data for 2022 documents a 125% increase in unsheltered homelessness from 2019 to 2022. HMIS data show that the number of people living unsheltered rose steadily from 2020 to 2022.
An area of growing concern in both PIT and HMIS data relates to chronic homelessness. PIT data documents that one in five people experiencing homelessness is chronically homeless. The comparable HMIS data, generally considered to be a more consistent and comprehensive measure, indicate that one in four is experiencing chronic homelessness.
The report also discusses the impacts of a significant lack of affordable housing in the state and how the rising cost of housing is outpacing growth in wages, which places housing far out of reach for many Granite Staters and contributes to homelessness in the state.
“Increasing the availability of affordable housing is a crucial element to solving this crisis,” said Jennifer Chisholm. “We must also ensure effective immediate responses are in place across the state to support our most vulnerable neighbors who do not have access to a safe, stable place to call home.”
Download the full report.
Founded in 1990, the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with a mission to eliminate the causes of homelessness through research, education, and advocacy. Learn more at www.nhceh.org.