Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Data feedback from Dallas 100,000 Homes Campaign "Registry Week"

During the week of March 25-30, 2012 between the hours of 3:30 AM and 6:30 AM, 85 community volunteers canvassed the streets of targeted areas in Downtown Dallas.  The volunteer teams used Community Solutions' Vulnerability Index to survey and create a by-name list of individuals experiencing street homelessness who are most at risk of premature death.

In addition to systematically gathering the names, pictures, and dates of birth of individuals sleeping on the streets, the teams also captured data on their health status, institutional history (jail, prison, hospital, and military), length of homelessness, patterns of shelter use, and previous housing situation.  These data were collected by use of a 36 item questionnaire.  The Vulnerability Index was used to identify those who have been homeless the longest and are the most vulnerable.  The list will be used to target new and available housing and service resources to the most vulnerable in an effort to reduce chronic homelessness within Downtown Dallas. 

  • 268 individuals experiencing street homelessness were identified and surveyed in Downtown Dallas.
  • 107 (40%) were found to have health conditions associated with a high mortality risk.
At-Risk Indicators
  • 48 (18%) Tri-Morbid
  • 40 (15%) More than 3 hospitalizations or ER visits in past year
  • 32 (12%) More than 3 ER visits in past 3 months
  • 29 (11%) Age over 60
  • 11 (4%) HIV/AIDS
  • Liver Disease, Cirrhosis, ESLD 16 (6%)
  • Kidney Disease, ESRD, or Dialysis 8 (3%)
  • Frostbite, Cold/Wet Weather Injury 32 (12%)
Other Facts
  • Oldest respondent:  70
  • Longest reported length of homelessness:  42 years
  • Average years homeless of respondents:  8 years
  • Average years homeless for Non-Vulnerable population:  4 years
  • 199 inpatient hospitalizations were reported in the past year
  • 295 ER visits were reported in the past 3 months
  • 164 (61%) report having no health insurance
  • Majority of respondents seek medical are in the Parkland Health and Hospital System
Gender (Total Surveyed)
  • 85% male
  • 13% female
  • 1% transgendered
  • 1% unknown
Service Needs
  • 83 (31%) reported dual diagnosis of mental illness and substance abuse
  • 184 (69%) reported a history of substance abuse
  • 110 (41%) reported only signs or symptoms of mental illness
  • 135 (50) reported at least one serious health condition
Veterans (Total Surveyed)
  • 49 (18%) were veterans
  • 20 veterans met criteria for "Vulnerable"
The 100,000 Homes Campaign in Dallas was spearheaded by CitySquare and other community partners along with the City of Dallas.

Community Solutions

The mission of Community Solutions is to strengthen communities to end homelessness by building partnerships, sharing innovations, and connecting vulnerable people to homes and support.  Community Solutions is currently organizing change agents to find and house the 100,000 most vulnerable homeless individuals in America as part of its 100,000 Homes Campaign.

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