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Good news! Survey shows drop in homeless numbers for Santa Barbara County

Erica Ward
The number of people reported homeless in Santa Barbara County dropped 3.7% from 2021 to 2022.

Total for county lowest since 2019.

A just released census of homelessness in Santa Barbara County contains some encouraging news.

The one-day countywide survey reported the number of unhoused people is at its lowest level since 2019. The January 25th snapshot of the situation in the county shows there is a total of 1,887 homeless people. That’s a 3.7% drop from 2021.

Of that number, 1,202 persons were on the streets, and 685 had some type of temporary shelter.

Since 2021, more than 900 temporary and permanent housing units have been added in the county. The county recently approved a plan to build more than 90 cabins for homeless, and at-risk individuals in Santa Maria.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.