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The Cost of Homelessness in San José
The Cost of Living in San José
The primary reasons San José residents become homeless are the lack of affordable housing and the lack of sufficient income.

The 2012 United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Federal Poverty Level (FPL) for one person is approximately $11,170 per year.

While the FPL for one person is approximately $931 per month, the self-sufficiency standard (a measure of income adequacy that calculates how much income working adults need to meet their household’s basic needs without subsidies) for a single person in Santa Clara County is $2,906 per month ($34,870 per year).

A minimum wage earner in California makes $15,360 per year, which is clearly below the County’s self-sufficiency standard. A one bedroom unit at fair market rent in Santa Clara County is $1,262. A monthly minimum wage paycheck is $1,280.

The Cost of Homelessness Impacts Everyone
It costs over 3 times more to allow someone to live on the street then to provide them with a permanent home! 
  • The care of one chronically homeless person using Emergency Room (ER) services and/or incarceration cost taxpayers an average of $61,000 each year
  • Permanent housing, including treatment and home-based case management, costs $16,000 per year for that same person
Source: 2004 San Francisco Plan to Abolish Chronic Homelessness

Homelessness is a health issue!
  • Approximately 780 homeless patients are treated and discharged from Santa Clara County hospitals each year
  • Homeless people suffer the same illnesses experienced by people with homes, but at rates that are three to six times higher
  • The average life expectancy for a chronically homeless individual is 47 years of age, compared to 78 years in the United States population as a whole
  • 51 homeless men and women died in the streets of Santa Clara County in 2010
  • 61 homeless men and women died in the streets of Santa Clara County in 2011