Point-in-Time (PiT) counts provide a snapshot of the number of people experiencing homelessness on a specific date in a community. Also called ‘Street Counts’ or ‘Homeless Counts,’ PiT counts are considered the best practice in tracking progress as communities work to end homelessness.*
According to the B.C. government count in 2018, “PiT counts are an undercount and represent only those individuals identified during the 24-hour period. The number of people who are actually experiencing homelessness is greater than what is presented in this report.”
PiT counts rely on people coming forward – on a specific day – to identify themselves as homeless. Some people living in inadequate places like cars, sheds or couch surfing, don’t consider themselves homeless. They also don’t count people who might move in and out of homelessness through the year.
The first-ever homeless census in Oceanside was conducted in 2011. A total of 68 people were identified; 43 were considered homeless and another 25 were considered to be at-risk of homelessness. News Release – 2011 Homeless Count
The second homeless count in May 2013 found 67 people to be homeless or at-risk of homelessness. In the 2013 count, 73% identified affordable housing as the largest need. Report – 2013 Homeless Count
In 2013, the Task Force secured funding to hire a coordinator to do a local homeless needs assessment on homelessness for the community. The resulting document, which addresses the existing services, gaps and possible solutions from other communities are available here: Needs Assessment (2014)
In April 2018 the Task Force took part in a provincially organized PiT count with the Homeless Services Association of B.C. The new stricter criteria found 42 people experiencing homelessness, but this was recognized as an under-count. 2018 Point-in-Time Homeless Count (PDF)
A second provincially organized PiT count was scheduled for April 2020 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Task Force has used this information to address ways to bridge the gaps within the community, focusing on collaboration among service providers. This is evident in the Task Force’s broad representation from throughout the community.