Risks to homeless residents still prevalent in Montgomery Co., despite population decline

Homelessness may be on the decline in Montgomery County, Maryland, but it remains a potentially life-threatening problem for homeless people in the county.

Homelessness may be on the decline in Montgomery County, Maryland, but it remains a potentially life-threatening problem for homeless people in the county.

Amanda Harris, chief of services to end and prevent homelessness for the county, said 60 homeless residents died in the state’s largest county in 2021.



“We know that homeless people have a shorter life expectancy than the average person and they also age prematurely, so it’s very hard on the body,” Harris said.

Harris said the deaths reflect a connection between housing and health care — the reason Montgomery County has moved 2,000 street residents to permanent housing over the past two years.

Council members gathered with the Rockville community on Wednesday to commemorate the county’s homeless residents who have passed away.

“It’s not about data or facts. It’s really about bringing the community together,” Harris said. “We share stories about all the people who have passed away. We also hear from people who have been served across the homelessness continuum to share their stories. »

According to a 2022 survey, there are currently 581 homeless people in Montgomery County.

Harris said the county aims to end homelessness for all populations by 2025.

Matthew Delaney of WTOP contributed to this report.

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