Hines VA Hospital Conducts Annual Census of Homeless Veterans and Sees Significant Decline Over Past Decade

Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital participated in the annual one-time count in suburban Cook, DuPage, Kane and Will counties in January 2021 to estimate the number of homeless Americans, including veterans, without safe housing and stable.

the Number of PITsled by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, takes place in communities across the country and is one of the tools used to assess progress each year toward VA’s priority goal of ending homelessness at home. veterans.

Data from a single night in January 2021 indicated significant decreases in the Four Counties area since 2011, specifically:

• Suburban Cook County: Approximately 31 veterans were counted as homeless. A decrease of 73% compared to 2011.

• DuPage County: Approximately six veterans were counted homeless. A decrease of 67% compared to 2011.

• Kane County: Approximately five veterans were counted homeless. A decrease of 82% compared to 2011.

• Will County: Approximately 19 veterans were counted homeless. A decrease of 5% compared to 2011.

“Over the past 10 years, the Hines VA Homeless Program has developed a homeless response system that ensures that every day veterans can immediately access shelter, be engaged by VA staff, and begin the process. to secure their own safe and stable home,” said Kerry Thomas, Hines VA Health Care for Homeless Veterans program specialist. “While this steep decline over the past decade speaks volumes about the work we’ve done so far, our program remains committed to ending veteran homelessness in every community we serve.”

In Illinois, 11 communities have effectively ended homelessness among veterans, and Hines VA Hospital continues to work with federal, state, and local agencies and nonprofit organizations to continue to reduce the homelessness among veterans in the region.


Nationally, the number of homeless veterans in the United States has nearly halved since 2010, with more than 920,000 veterans and their family members permanently housed or prevented from becoming homeless.

“No veteran should be homeless,” said Hines VA Hospital Director James Doelling. “One of VA’s top priorities is ending homelessness among our nation’s heroes, and Hines VA is deeply committed to that goal in our region. If you see a homeless veteran, please call our hotline at (708) 202-4961 We can help you.”

Community members can notify Hines VA of homeless veterans in their area by calling (708) 202-4961. A Hines VA social worker may be dispatched to assist the veteran in need. If you leave a message, Hines VA representatives will contact the caller within one business day for additional information.

For 2021 PIT estimates of homelessness in the United States, see Part 1 of the 2021 Annual Homelessness Assessment Report to Congress. For more information on the PIT Count, visit www.va.gov/HOMELESS/pit_count.asp.

Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital, located 12 miles west of downtown Chicago on a 147-acre campus, provides primary, extended, and specialty care to veteran patients in the Chicago area. It is the largest VA in the state of Illinois, where over one million veterans reside. The hospital treats more than 44,000 veterans of World War II throughout the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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