Number of homeless Iraq, Afghan vets doubles
The number of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who are homeless or at risk of losing a roof over their heads has more than doubled in the past two years, according to government data.
Through the end of September, 26,531 of them were living on the streets, at risk of losing their homes, staying in temporary housing or receiving federal vouchers to pay rent, the Department of Veterans Affairs reports.
That’s up from 10,500 in 2010. The VA says the numbers could be higher because they include only the homeless the department is aware of.
The increase arrives as President Obama’s goal of ending homelessness for all veterans is showing some results.
The VA attributes the increase partly to more aggressive efforts to identify and assist this younger generation of veteran.
The department says effects of the two wars on them, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, and a slow economic recovery have contributed to their homelessness.