When people think of homelessness they tend to think of people living on the streets. But there are much broader definitions of homelessness for people who only have temporary housing, or live in sheltered housing, and for people who couch surf or stay in hotels and motels, to list just a few. With all these definitions it can sometimes be difficult to gather accurate information on the full scale of the problem. While this guide focuses solely on statistics relating to street sleeping, we acknowledge that homelessness is a much bigger issue. It is also important to acknowledge that due to the transient nature of homelessness it can often be difficult to ascertain accurate or long term statistics, which limits the production of accurate information. We also acknowledge that mental illness can render a person unable to give consent to take part in studies. So when reading this brochure, it’s important to keep all these points in mind.

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