Boone County aims to combat housing issues for homeless people

1 year 2 months 1 week ago Tuesday, February 07 2017 Feb 7, 2017 Tuesday, February 07, 2017 2:31:00 PM CST February 07, 2017 in News
By: Ming Ma, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Combating a large homeless population in Boone County remains a major issue. 

According to an annual count of homeless people in Missouri counties, Boone County had 220 homeless people last winter,  the highest rate among 101 counties.

The county is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for communities involved in what's called a continuum of care, a program that allows communities to coordinate efforts to address homelessness.

"Part of the reason why we have the highest homeless population is that we're a successful community, "said Phil Steinhaus, the chief executive officer of Columbia Housing Authority. "People come to Columbia and might end up in Columbia and end up staying here is because there are more opportunities for people."

Steinhaus said the housing authority has received funds from HUD for specific ongoing programs for helping homeless people. One program called Shelter-Plus-Care, provides funding and services for housing for homeless people with disabilities, including people with mental health issues. The other, called the Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program, aims to help homeless veterans. 

"With Shelter-Plus-Care, we can serve around 65 people," Steinhaus said. "With Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program, we can help 143 homeless veterans."

Rick, a homeless person who has lived in Columbia for a few years, said he rather be sleeping on couches and grocery stores instead of sleeping in an emergency shelter.

"It doesn't quite feel safe, it's been locked up," he said.

He's concerned about the mental stability of some people in the shelter and said he's worried about fights.

"I don't need that drama in my life,"  he said.

Steinhaus said the Shelter-Plus-Care program is different than services provided by an emergency shelter. 

"This is permanent shelter," he said. "We're able to get people off the street, connect them with supportive services, and help them transition back into living in independent life."

According to HUD's 2016 report, Cole County has the second highest rate of homelessness with 69 sheltered and unsheltered homeless. 

More News

Grid
List
CLAYTON (AP) — A former St. Louis-area teacher will be on five years of probation for having sex with a... More >>
1 hour ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 8:43:59 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
UNIVERSITY CITY (AP) — A former St. Louis-area day care teaching assistant has been found guilty of molesting a 5-year-old... More >>
1 hour ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 8:40:09 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY -- Firefighters responded to a structure fire in the 100 block of E. Ashley St. at 11:08 p.m.... More >>
3 hours ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 6:27:00 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri legislators approved numerous changes Thursday to local elections, including allowing voters to request absentee ballots... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 5:27:13 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
MILLER COUNTY - Casey Shoemate, a 26-year-old Miller County sheriff's deputy, died Friday night after colliding head-on with another vehicle... More >>
12 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 10:05:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- Retailer Sears will close its Columbia Mall store this summer because the location has become unprofitable. Sears Director... More >>
13 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 8:46:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- A local non-profit organization, Columbia Access Television, hosted a 24-hour film contest that started Friday at 5:30 pm. ... More >>
15 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 7:13:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
LAKE OZARK - Community members are coming together to help a family who lost their children in a fire get... More >>
15 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 7:10:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – As more and more fraternities face misconduct charges across the nation, the Greek community of MU is looking... More >>
16 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 6:13:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS - Gov. Eric Greitens is remaining defiant in the face of a new felony charge. On... More >>
16 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 5:45:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Children filled school gymnasiums across Columbia for the second day of the Unbound Book Festival. The festival showcases... More >>
18 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 3:42:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - April 20 marks the day of the Columbine school shooting, which claimed 13 lives. The Columbia Missouri... More >>
18 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 3:26:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - A potential fire station project on an annexed lot in southwest Columbia could lead to quicker response times... More >>
18 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 3:21:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - After the deadly fire in Lake Ozark, officials from the Division of Fire Safety are working to... More >>
19 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 3:01:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - For 13 years, Rhonda Harper has been at the helm of Lincoln University's "Marching Musical Storm." ... More >>
19 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 2:26:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - It’s been a little more than two months since the Stoneman Douglas school shooting in Parkland, Fla., and... More >>
20 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 2:04:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say a suburban St. Louis police officer fired at a would-be robber about four weeks... More >>
20 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 1:35:11 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Lab tests on an unknown substance sent to a Missouri lawmaker suggest it was pesticide.... More >>
20 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 1:31:19 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 56°
11am 60°
12pm 61°
1pm 63°
2pm 64°