More seniors homeless in Red Deer

2016 Red Deer Point in Time Homeless Count Report

Red Deer saw an increase in homeless seniors according to the 2016 Red Deer Point in Time Homeless Count Report released on Thursday.

The count, conducted Oct. 19, found 149 people to be homeless and five per cent were age 65 and older, up from one per cent in the 2014 count.

“We were a bit surprised at the seniors numbers,” said Roxana Nielsen Stewart, social planning supervisor with the city.

“It’s still not be a huge amount, but we have to be prepared to provide services and supports.”

Services people require depends on the individual but can include providing a rent supplement, helping them find and keep housing by working with the landlord, and supports to address mental health issues or addictions.

The largest segment of homeless, 18 per cent, were between age 30 and 34. In the 2014 count, those between 25 to 29 were the largest group at 16.3 per cent.

The count showed more people were chronically homelessness at 43 per cent, up from 35.4 per cent in 2014.

Nielsen Stewart said in July the city had shifted its focus to the chronic homeless population and the count confirmed that was the group to prioritize for housing supports and services.

A jump in the percentage of homeless not using shelters was also identified. Twenty-five per cent, or 37 people, were living rough compared to 16 per cent in 2014.

The number of homeless using a makeshift shelter or tent in a park, parkland, forest, other public land or private property doubled to 18 from nine in 2014.

Another 18 homeless used public spaces like sidewalks or bus shelters, up from 10 in 2014.

She said refocusing on chronic homeless included those sleeping outdoors.

“There is a team now funded and their role is to make sure they are out in the community actually speaking to these folks and that has been very successful.”

A preliminary report on the count was released in November and the full report can be found at www.reddeer.ca/pitcount.

szielinski@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

911 operator helps Red Deer couple during birth

Meet for the first time Thursday

Canada’s 150 year ends on ice, but no hockey pucks, triple jumps allowed

OTTAWA — No figure skating. No hockey. No racing. No cell phones.… Continue reading

Banner signing at Collicutt Centre

International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Regulator investigating Sears Canada liquidation sale prices: monitor

TORONTO — The Competition Bureau is investigating allegations that prices on some… Continue reading

Video: Joshua Frank explains shooting Gordon, Sandra and Monica Klaus

Frank and Jason Klaus are facing triple murder charges in the deaths Klaus’ parents and sister

Updated: Missing Sylvan Lake women found

Women were reported missing earlier this week

Liberals propose billions for affordable housing, including individual benefits

A Liberal government fond of promising help for those working hard to… Continue reading

Alberta Party sees growth in Central Alberta

Greg Clark addressed health care needs addressed in Red Deer

Ponoka council freezes Ponoka Fire Department spending

All discretionary spending frozen until full budget numbers are presented

WATCH: Ponoka’s Festival of Trees sees continued support

Three days of celebration and fundraising held at the Calnash Ag Event Centre

Creationist will speak at home-schooling convention in Red Deer

Ken Ham has debated Bill Nye on the Earth’s origins

CP Holiday train makes stops in Central Alberta

The popular train will feature entertainment from Colin James and Emma-Lee

Cost to fix Phoenix pay system to surpass $540 million, auditor general says

The federal government’s chronic salary struggles will take more time and more… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month