Homelessness, Reports and Publications

NAEH Brief Explores How Gender Minorities Experience Homelessness


The National Alliance to End Homelessness’ first installment of the Demographic Data Project explores the gender minority experience of homelessness and how prepared communities are to ensure equal access to resources for this population.

A national review of the 2018 Point-in-Time (PIT) Count data provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) found that in nearly 2/3rds of the Continua of Care (CoCs) across the United States, including CoCs in almost every state, there were transgender and non-binary individuals. It was also found that these two groups are more likely to be unsheltered than the general population of people experiencing homelessness.

Some key highlights from the brief include:

  • A total of 2,512 transgender people (or 0.5% of the total homeless population) were identified in the PIT Count, with 44% (1,100 people) in shelter and 56% (1,412 people) unsheltered.
  • 30% of the sheltered transgender population were identified in New York, and 73% of all transgender people were living unsheltered in California.
  • A total of 1,163 non-binary individuals (or 0.2% of the total homeless population) were identified in the PIT Count, with 18% (206 people) in shelter and 82% (957 people) unsheltered.
  • Washington and California were found to have 77% of all unsheltered people who did not identify as male, female or transgender.
  • People who identify as transgender are most likely to fall in the 18-24-year-old age range, meaning this brief is applicable and important to service providers working with homeless youth.

HUD’s 2012 Equal Access Rule is important in making homelessness a rare, brief and non-reoccurring experience for these populations, as it states that “all HUD programs are open to all eligible individuals and families regardless of their marriage status, sexual orientation or gender identity.”

For more information and related resources, click here.


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