A volunteer takes notes during the March homeless count. (Photo: BCNPHA)

Volunteers counted 644 homeless people in Surrey over 24 hours in March

Data collected helps governments and community agencies help the homeless

Surrey had 644 homeless people during the early stages of the COVID-19 outbreak in the province.

That’s according to preliminary data from the 2020 Homeless Count, which identified 3,634 homeless people in Metro Vancouver. The count was conducted on March 3 and March 4 by the BC Non-Profit Housing Association, or BCNPHA.

A press release from the BCNPHA indicates that seniors’ homelessness continues while Indigenous people remain “significantly” overrepresented.

“Additionally, racial identity data collected for the first time in a regional count reveals that Black people were found to be disproportionately represented among racialized groups experiencing homelessness,” the press release says this year’s count revealed.

Of those people counted, other than in Surrey, Vancouver had the highest number of homeless at 2,095, followed by Surrey (644) and then Langley (209). Roughly 1,200 volunteers participated in the count.

READ ALSO: Volunteers search for ‘hidden problem’ during Surrey’s homeless count

“Surrey and Langley were among five communities that showed an increase in the number of people experiencing homelessness along with Burnaby, the North Shore and Richmond,” the press released indicated. “Small decreases in the number of individuals who were reported as homeless were seen in Vancouver, the Tri-Cities, White Rock, Ridge Meadows, New Westminster and Delta.”

Of all 3,634 counted, 2,605 had some form of shelter while 1,029 were unsheltered. This year’s count recorded 29 more homeless people than the 3,605 recorded in the 2017 count.

“The Homeless Count provides important insight into the diversity of individuals experiencing homelessness as well as the different challenges and circumstances they face,” said Lorraine Copas, chairwoman of the community advisory board that oversees the count. “This year, we have continued to work to explore different methodologies and approaches to allow us to deepen our insight. At the same time, it is important to recognize that behind each of the statistics is someone who is living without a place that they can call their own and who deserves every chance to realize their full potential.”

Data collected during these counts helps governments and community agencies make develop policy and programs aimed at helping the homeless.


Like us on Facebook and follow Tom on Twitter

City of SurreyHomeless

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS: One injured in shooting on South Surrey-Langley border

Shots reported near 194 Street and 34 Avenue, burned-out vehicle found in 18100-block of 12 Avenue

PHOTOS: South Surrey skunk family photo earns honourable mention in BC SPCA contest

Winners of society’s latest wildlife photography contest announced

Surrey wrestler Jason Bains receives four-year suspension for using banned substance

Queen Elizabeth Secondary grad tests positive for steroid Turinabol, silver national medal removed

What happens when someone tests positive for COVID-19 at a Surrey school?

Surrey Schools Superintendent explains step-by-step process for notifying the community

COVID-19 exposures reported at four more Surrey schools

Fraser Health has created a new webpage listing COVID-19 cases in schools

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Record-breaking 165 new COVID-19 cases diagnosed in B.C. in 24-hour period

Fifty-seven people are in hospital battling the novel coronavirus

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

Report raises questions about COVID outbreak that killed 25 seniors at Langley Lodge

CEO defends leaked document that’s igniting queries about BC’s most deadly COVID outbreak

PHOTO: RCMP escort beaver across busy Chilliwack road

Motorists had to exercise patience as the slow-moving creature crossed several lanes of traffic

B.C.’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan: Top 5 things you need to know

Jobs training, tax incentives for employers to hire staff and more

March to protect old growth, stop industrial logging coming to B.C. Legislature

Organizers say they want to give frontline communities a bigger say in nearby logging

B.C. releases details of $1.5B economic recovery plan, $660M in business tax incentives

Economic plan includes support for employers, as well as training for workers

Most Read