Street census finds 61% of homeless identify as Indigenous
The 2018 Winnipeg Street Census revealed some startling facts about homelessness in the city.
After surveying approximately 1,500 people experiencing homelessness on April 17 and 18 it found that 61.2 per cent of respondents identified as Indigenous and 65.1 per cent are male.
The survey, which was conducted over a 24-hour period, found 38 per cent of respondents live in absolute homelessness, meaning outside or in a shelter, and 60.2 per cent are provisionally accommodated.
In terms of age, anyone under 16 was not surveyed because they are below the age of consent. The median age of people experiencing homelessness in Winnipeg is 39, and 367 of the survey’s respondents are under 29. The survey found 20 seniors; aged 65 or older are experiencing homelessness.
Over the last year, the average length of time the respondents spent in homeless is seven months.
When it comes to education, 26.7 per cent are high school graduates or have a GED, 31.3 per cent have some high school education and 21.5 per cent have only primary school education.
The street census also shows that 50 per cent of those surveyed spent time in foster care or group homes, 10.7 per cent are part of the LGBTTQ community and 1.8 per cent are recent immigrants or refugees.
The goal of the street census was to understand the nature and extent of homelessness in Winnipeg.
To gather the information, almost 300 volunteers collected data from 69 emergency, domestic violence and youth shelters; transitional housing sites; bottle depots; and community agencies and drop-in locations. These surveyors walked almost 119 kilometres of inner-city streets and 99 kilometres of streets outside the inner city to speak with respondents.
Administrative data about bed-use on the night of April 17-18 was also gathered from emergency, youth and domestic violence shelters and interim housing for homeless people. As well, some information was provided by institutional, residential treatment and community mental health residential programs.