San Diego Finds Housing for 1,000 Homeless Veterans

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San Diego police assist homeless individuals. Courtesy OnScene.TV

A city-backed initiative launched last March pushing to find housing for homeless veterans has reached its goal, and put a roof over about a thousand people, city officials announced Thursday.

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Daniel, a 56-year-old U.S. Navy veteran, was among those who benefited from the Housing our Heroes initiative. He was homeless for two years before the program helped him move into an apartment in April.

“I was in that program less than a month and I got housed,” he said. “This is a new start for me, so it feels really good to have my own place again.”

More than 430 individual landlords took part in the effort. Forty-three percent of them were first-time participants in the city’s rental assistance programs.

“I want to thank the hundreds of landlords participating in the program for stepping up to help our most vulnerable veterans,” Mayor Kevin Faulconer said. “We still have a lot of work to do to reduce homelessness, but this shows what we can accomplish when we work together to help turn people’s lives around.”

San Diego Housing Commission President Richard Gentry said the goal was able to be met thanks to a joint effort by service providers, government agencies and landlords.

The homeless population in the city of San Diego has grown in recent years.

In January, 5,619 transients were counted, a 10 percent increase from last year.

Of those tallied, 3,231 were living on the street.

–City News Service

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