While Washington County is an affluent area, there are many in the community who are struggling to meet basic needs. In order to chart the path to preventing and ending homelessness for all in Washington County, it is important that we understand the unique needs of those within our community. Heading Home Washington provides an extensive overview of current needs and gaps in Washington county (pp. 13-22).

Video: The Face of Homelessness in Washington County
(click to view video - opens in a new window)


Washington County conducts a Point In Time (PIT) survey every year, that attempts to count sheltered and unsheltered homeless persons on a single night. The PIT for 2011 was conducted on the night of January 27, 2011. It was conducted via the online tool ‘Survey Monkey' and was sent out to over 200 individuals and agencies involved with serving homeless persons or those at risk of homelessness. Law enforcement officials, social service agencies, health care providers, schools, churches, shelters, food shelves, and many more community service agencies were involved in this effort. The Housing Collaborative also had volunteers out looking for homeless persons in parking lots, parks, etc.

Key Findings: A total of 138 Households that included 313 Persons were identified as being homeless in Washington County on January 27, 2011. General information for 2011 is below and more detailed information for 2010 is also listed.

HUD Point in Time Count

1 Chronically Homeless is defined as a single adult having: 1)  a mental illness diagnosis; and 2) experienced homeless for a year or more continuously or at least four episodes of homelessness over the past three years.  It should be noted that with the passage of the HEARTH Act, HUD's definition of Chronically Homeless will also include families meeting the conditions above, but as of the time of this report HUD has not formally amended this definition.  Minnesota's "long-term homeless" definition does include youth, families and single adults meeting the conditions above.