HUD has published the Notice for Housing Inventory Count (HIC) and Point-in-Time (PIT) Data Collection for Continuums of Care (CoCs), which informs CoCs of information that must be collected in order to successfully complete the 2016 HIC and PIT counts.
While communities are not required to conduct unsheltered counts in 2016, HUD strongly encourages communities to conduct both a sheltered and unsheltered count this coming January. The January 2016 PIT count will be a critical element in measuring our progress as a nation towards ending veteran homelessness in 2015. Of the changes listed below, communities should take special note of the change to the data collection requirements for chronic homelessness. In anticipation of the soon to be released Final Rule on Defining "Chronically Homeless," HUD has updated its data collection requirements for individuals and families experiencing chronic homelessness.
- HUD has clarified that CoCs will only report rapid re-housing (RRH) beds and units that are occupied by RRH participants on the night of the count (i.e., in their own permanent housing unit and actively enrolled in RRH on the night of the count), whether or not rental assistance was provided.
- CoCs that have beds dedicated to veterans, youth, and individuals and persons in families experiencing chronic homelessness will need to report those beds by household type, instead of providing a single number of dedicated beds.
- HUD will no longer be collecting the unmet need data as part of its HIC data collection process in the Homelessness Data Exchange (HDX). As part of their local planning process, CoCs should continue to analyze their homeless response system to determine what inventory is needed to meet their local needs.
- CoCs should no longer report inventory and persons in VA-funded Mental Health Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program – Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans (i.e., VADOM) as part of the HIC and PIT count. This is a change that applies to all reporting going forward. HUD and the VA will consider VADOM beds treatment beds and not include that inventory, or persons in that inventory, as part of the dedicated homeless inventory.
- HUD has created a new data collection field for CoCs to indicate for each project whether it is funded through other federal funding sources than HUD McKinney-Vento funding.
- HUD has included a new field to record the Transitional Housing (TH) Unit Type. Similar to the Bed Type field for Emergency Shelter projects, the TH Unit Type field allows communities to indicate whether the persons served in the TH projects are served in a single site (i.e., congregate or project-based) or multiple sites (i.e., scattered-site or clustered).
- For purposes of reporting in the PIT count, a chronically homeless person:
- Is homeless and lives in a place not meant for human habitation, a safe haven, or in an emergency shelter; and
- Has been homeless and living or residing in a place not meant for human habitation, a safe haven, or in an emergency shelter continuously for at least 1 year or on at least 4 separate occasions in the last 3 years where the combined length of time homeless in those occasions is at least 12 months; and
- Has a disability.
- In addition to reporting on individuals and persons in families over 18 experiencing chronic homeless, HUD requires communities to collect and report chronically homeless status on heads of households that are under 18, which includes both unaccompanied youth and parenting youth under age 18.
- After receiving important feedback HUD decided to collapse the transgender categories back into a single reporting option – “Transgender.”
- HUD is requiring CoCs to report the demographic data on parenting youth and unaccompanied youth in separate tables. For the parenting youth table, CoCs will only report the demographics on the youth parents and exclude the demographic data on the children of the youth parents.
Additional HIC and PIT Resources
- Preparing for Your 2016 Housing Inventory and Point-in-Time Counts Webinar: HUD will provide a webinar in early December that will highlight new requirements and data collection guidance for the 2016 HIC and PIT counts and allow communities to ask questions. HUD will send a listserv with registration information in the coming weeks.
- Point-in-Time Count Methodology Guide: This guide identifies HUD’s PIT count standards and provides information about methodologies and issues to consider when conducting a PIT count. Communities should regularly refer to this guide for insight about implementing their PIT counts.
- Point-in-Time Count Implementation Tools Page: On the HUD Exchange, HUD has provided several tools to help communities with various phases of PIT count implementation. HUD recently updated this page with a PIT count planning worksheet to assist communities to consider the many aspects of the PIT count and a recommended timeline for when to consider the many moving parts that make up the PIT count process. HUD also posted an extrapolation tool to help communities derive their demographic estimates if their data is incomplete and a crosswalk of HMIS data elements to sheltered PIT count requirements.
- Point-in-Time Survey Tools Page: A critical aspect of the PIT count is the survey instrument communities choose to use for their PIT count. HUD has published model surveys with questions that will help communities know how to ask questions to fulfill HUD’s reporting requirements. Please note that the model surveys were not updated this year so they do not reflect questions about parenting youth and the new chronically homeless requirements. HUD plans on updating this for the 2017 count. Note that HUD is no longer providing the free PIT mobile application. HUD is working on a resource to help communities see the lessons learned from communities that used the PIT mobile application. That will not likely be available until the 2017 PIT count.
- Current and Formerly Homeless Persons: Communities are strongly encouraged to work with local partners and especially current and formerly homeless persons in their areas. There is no better resource for understanding where people experiencing homelessness sleep and how best to serve them than persons who have experienced homelessness. This is a resource that every community has and HUD encourages you to learn from them.
Questions about the HIC or PIT?
If you have questions about entering HIC or PIT data that are not covered in this Notice, please submit them to the HDX Ask A Question (AAQ) portal on the HUD Exchange website. To submit a question to the HDX AAQ portal, select “HDX: Homelessness Data Exchange” from the “My question is related to” drop down list on Step 2 of the question submission process.