Record Homeless Population Reported – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
A record homeless number was reported for Dallas and Collin Counties in 2021, released Tuesday by the Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance.
The number on February 18, 2021 for both counties is 4,570, of which 465 were in Collin County.
It’s just above the 4,538 reported in 2019 and well above the 3,798 reported by MDHA in 2017. The number for 2020 was 4,471.
When a group of volunteers saw the growing problem by the roadside, they began with additional food from a congregation, and their efforts grew into a charity named after a Bible verse about feeding the hungry.
Now m25-35.org is working to provide the homeless with groceries and to prepare weekly meals at the members’ homes.
“We have seen that there is a great need for the critical homeless to be able to offer these meals on a weekly basis, but we want to go beyond the weekly ones. If we can do this on a daily basis, we will know we are doing what we are supposed to, ”said volunteer Marvin Bernard.
The annual number of homeless people in Dallas and Collin Counties documents the need for federal funding to combat homelessness.
COVID-19 increased the problem and made face-to-face counting difficult.
Then a winter frost came exactly on the days when the February census was scheduled.
Some homeless people have been sent to heat centers instead of being accurately counted as unprotected outdoors. This is another detail in the homelessness data.
Some shelters had burst pipes that resulted in people being moved around.
The correct number may even be higher than 4,570, which still shows an urgent need for affordable housing in the Dallas area.
The new MDHA chairman is businessman Peter Brodsky.
“The long and the short is that we need cheaper residential units. MDHA is actively working to motivate landlords to partner with our homeless collaboration programs. In the long term, as a community, we need to figure out how to improve affordable housing, ”Brodsky said.
As a land developer, Brodsky is overseeing the redbird mall redevelopment in south Dallas. Previously, he volunteered as chairman of the Dallas Animal Shelter Advisory Commission, tasked with solving serious problems with stray animals. This problem is much better than it used to be in Dallas.
In his new role, Brodsky Tuesday promoted in-depth intelligence from independent service providers on the homeless population in the Dallas area.
“We all know that we can’t do what we can’t measure,” said Brodsky. “Participation is beneficial for everyone, because the better we get, the more federal funds we receive. And that’s more money for us to continue our work. “
Volunteer Carlos Miller said m25-35.org worked on its own with fundraisers and workers, but they see a greater need and support the call to partner with MDHA.
“That makes a lot of sense and that’s a good thing. We consider it a blessing because it looks like a door is about to open. Where we couldn’t reach for the door we needed, it’s like it just opens for us, ”Miller said. “There is no time for us to just think about ourselves, because if we live in this city and understand that there is a homeless condition in this city, then that condition is a condition that affects us.”
The problem has only increased in Dallas as several other cities made further advances. Former Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings appointed a resolution investigation committee after serving as chairman of the MDHA before being elected mayor.
This commission’s 2016 report recommended many of the same solutions that Brodsky advocates today.
The city of Dallas still has bonds approved by voters for homeless shelters. And the relief money from COVID19 helped Dallas buy several hotels as temporary patient shelters that will move to homeless shelters in the future.