A record number of homeless people on the streets of

A record number of homeless people on the streets of the United States – Le Journal de Montréal

Homelessness is a scourge in many places across the United States, but with rising rents, the homeless population is higher than ever.

According to a study by Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies, around 653,000 people were homeless in January 2023, 12% more than in 2022 and 48% more than in 2015. That's a record increase, according to researchers.

Although the situation has long been known in some states such as California and Washington, we are seeing homelessness becoming more common in historically affordable states such as Arizona, Ohio, Tennessee and Texas, CBS News reported.

“During the early years of the pandemic, tenant protections, income support and rental assistance helped prevent a dramatic increase in homelessness. However, many of these protections ended in 2022, at a time when rents were rising rapidly and more migrants were being excluded from work,” the researchers noted in their report.

While the average annual income of Americans is between $45,000 and $74,999, many households invest between 30 and 50% of their salary on rent. This is due to a meteoric rise in average rent, which reached $1,964 per month last December, a 23% increase compared to pre-pandemic levels.

“Rapidly rising rents coupled with wage declines early in the pandemic have highlighted the inadequacy of the existing housing safety net, particularly in times of crisis,” reads the latest document released by Harvard on Jan. 25.