Thursday, March 16, 2017
According to the latest homeless count, Santa Barbara County has 1,489 homeless people, a number that’s remained relatively stable the past six years. The largest number of homeless live in the City of Santa Barbara — 790 — but that number has dropped 13 percent from 2015, 16 percent from 2013, and 24 percent from 2011. Nearly 70 percent of the city’s homeless were male, two-thirds reported having health insurance, 55 percent were white, and 130 lived in vehicles. The big bump in numbers came in Santa Maria, Lompoc, and Isla Vista. That increase could reflect better reporting and counting approaches, however, rather than a growth in actual homeless populations.