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U.S. Cities with the Most Homeless People

Name the U.S. cities that have the most people living on the streets, in cars, or in tents.
  • Based on one-night counts of unsheltered homeless people from 2015 and 2016
  • Quiz idea: Joez
  • By city proper, not metro area
  • Quiz by Quizmaster - Dec 09, 2016
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#
City
21,338
4,358
2,942
2,810
2,794
2,745
#
City
2,345
≈ 2,000
1,711
1,243
1,005
Answer Stats
#
City
% Correct
Your %
+1
level ∞
Dec 9, 2016
This quiz uses the one-night counts of homeless populations performed by the various cities and counties. There is no single accurate source for this data, so I had to compile it manually. The number for Las Vegas is an estimate based on the 3,916 people living unsheltered in Clark County.
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level ∞
Dec 10, 2016
Also Oakland might make the list too, but I'm not sure. There were 2,337 unsheltered people in 2013 in Alameda County. Not sure what the numbers are for Oakland.
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level 68
Dec 9, 2016
Why does LA have the same number of homeless as the rest of this list combined?
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level 72
Dec 9, 2016
Climate perhaps?
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level 68
Dec 13, 2016
Huge city + high cost of living + lots of drugs + warm all year = a lot of people on the streets.
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level 21
Apr 18, 2017
I don't agree with the warm all year part. It is not too warm here right now. Also, in the coastal area (except for Venice beach), there aren't many drugs. The only big drug here is weed, and the others are mostly in downtown and poor areas.
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level 43
Apr 18, 2017
@amarsh1213 you realise that warm is relative right? It's almost never below freezing in LA. Compare that to NYC where the is a chance of it being below freezing for at least 3 months out of the year.
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level 64
Dec 9, 2016
The west coast is well-represented on this list
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level 68
Dec 13, 2016
I was surprised not to see Miami on the list. There were homeless people everywhere when I was there last and they were hit hardest by the real estate bubble.
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level 65
Apr 18, 2017
The West Coast is where it's possible to live outside all year without dying. Also, 17% of the population of the U.S live in the states of California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Hawaii.
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level 65
Dec 9, 2016
Sad facts...
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level 58
Dec 10, 2016
NYC? Quite shocked...
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level 77
Dec 10, 2016
Why? Have you never been there? Or seen it represented in film or on television? There's a very good reason 98% get it right, you know.
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level 68
Dec 13, 2016
2,794 homeless in such a massive city seems impressively low to me. I'd think the number would be way higher.
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level 57
Apr 18, 2017
I think he was being sarcastic.
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level 67
Dec 11, 2016
I'm sure a lot of the West Coast is because of the mild climate, not very cold in the winter and not too hot in the summer . . . except Las Vegas.
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level 63
Mar 17, 2017
Thanks for the reference. My figures seem much higher, especially for New York.
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level 28
Apr 18, 2017
Interesting the areas in The United States that have the highest cost of living and the most homeless people are the most liberal parts of the country. People who supposedly support the poor and minorities.....
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level 70
Apr 18, 2017
Yeah because there are so many giant cities in Kansas and Nebraska. Wow you're a genius.
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level 64
Apr 18, 2017
In say in a lot of those places there's a certain amount of choice, if you know the right people it's probably not such a bad life. I know in the major Australian cities there's vast numbers of young people living on the streets as a life style, holding down jobs etc. If the weathers good enough you can do without a roof.
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level 61
Apr 18, 2017
I noticed it too. There are plenty of large cities in more conservative states as well, but I don't see Houston, Dallas, Austin, Ft. Worth, Phoenix, Birmingham, Montgomery, New Orleans, Nashville, etc. on the list. Of course, given Quizmaster's statement about how he had to compile the data himself, it could be the numbers are skewed because some cities don't have as accurate of a count, or don't bother to make the information available. I wouldn't take this quiz as an indication of anything one way or the other.
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level 62
Apr 19, 2017
Because a lot of these cities crack down on homelessness and either imprison or harass them into leaving town.
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level 42
Apr 20, 2017
Hey, there's a good liberal chiming in!! Free speech unless you disagree. Let's resort to personal comments because we don't like what someone says. Thankfully, God's gift to this website chimes in again! See, I'm slowing becoming more like you. Awesome!
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level 42
Apr 20, 2017
Nothing RowdyTommy said warrants that. Are not the cities on the list in the most liberal parts of the country? Do liberals not promote their adoration for helping those less fortunate through government programs rather than private entities. Thanks again for your constructive comments.
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level 68
Apr 18, 2017
I would say it's more to do with climate - hard to survive too many winters while homeless in somewhere like Detroit or Minneapolis - but am surprised that places like Miami and New Orleans are not here
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level 71
Apr 18, 2017
It might make a difference whether the counts were made in summer or winter. Some of them move with the seasons.
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level 56
Apr 18, 2017
The most liberal parts are also the most populous, broadly speaking, so would usually be expected to produce higher raw numbers - and of course, it's not surprising that the people who care are the people who have more experience of it. But really, there are so many chains of reasoning that connect political ideology and homelessness, whether it's saying one causes the other or some shared circumstance brings about both, that trying to 'explain it' is pointless. There are always correlations like this when you consider almost any two social statistics, but even if you already had a good idea that there was a specific reason for a connection between the two and it's borne out in the data... it's probably only vaguely right as a generalisation, if at all - sometimes it turns out that it was just a longstanding misconception about how the world works and how people behave. The best way to find out the truth is to experiment, which one must do via policy... and that works out... sometimes.
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level 61
Apr 18, 2017
True, but there are plenty of large cities in conservative areas that did not make the list (Houston, New Orleans, Phoenix, etc.). Though as I mentioned in my reply to kalbahamut, that doesn't necessarily mean anything because of how scattered the data was that Quizmaster had to compile.
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level 54
Apr 18, 2017
Rowdy that is one of the more ignorant comments I have ever read in my life. If you understood some very basic tenets about economics, housing, cost of living...or really, just taking 15 seconds to consider how inane what you said is, you wouldn't have said it. And yet...
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level 62
Apr 19, 2017
I can tell you exactly why there are more homeless people in more liberal cities ... they migrate there because they can at least survive. Conservative cities "solve" homelessness by chasing the homeless out of town. It's easy and it makes the problem go elsewhere. As a San Francisco resident, I can say that we bear a significant portion of our entire nations burden when it comes to actually attempting to help the homeless. We certainly haven't figured it out, but most other cities don't even try. I do agree with some of the other comments about climate. If I had to be on the street, I would at least try to be somewhere I wouldn't freeze to death.
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level 51
Apr 18, 2017
All cities in Democrat States.
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level ∞
Apr 18, 2017
Not surprising at all. People are free to migrate wherever they like within the U.S.. Cities like Seattle are very tolerant towards homeless people, and spend a large amount of money on services directed towards them. The relative lack of homeless people in the conservative areas is probably a reflection of the lack of services. Generally speaking, cities on the West Coast are doing the rest of the country a service by shouldering a greater amount of the burden.
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level 56
May 16, 2017
BURNED
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level 51
Apr 18, 2017
New Orleans? I know they've had great success reducing the numbers since Katrina, but surely they have more than Honolulu...
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level 33
Apr 19, 2017
They are similar is population size, but it's a lot harder to leave Honolulu and start anew than it is to leave New Orleans. I imagine there are a lot of lifetime homeless folks in Hawaii.
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level 55
Apr 18, 2017
I truly am surprised that the majority of the cities are on teh West Coast.
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level 66
Apr 18, 2017
Having lived in both downtown Seattle + San Francisco, I feel like these numbers are an undercount, but that's probably totally skewed by perspective.
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level 61
Apr 18, 2017
It's worth pointing out that these numbers aren't necessarily an indication of anything, politically speaking. Quizmaster mentioned that there is no single accurate source for this data, so he had to compile it from all over. That means you're looking at numbers compiled by dozens if not hundreds of different people, using god only knows how many different methods. Also, one-night counts aren't a particularly reliable way to measure either, because we have no way of knowing 1) if those numbers were the same a day later, a week later, a month later; 2) what days or times of year these numbers were collected; 3) whether they were even reported honestly. In short, it's an interesting quiz, but it would be a mistake to take it as indicative of anything at all.
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level ∞
Apr 18, 2017
I think the data is good enough. It's certainly better than anything else that exists.
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level 61
Apr 19, 2017
I didn't mean to impugn your data collection, merely to point out that it isn't necessarily a 100% apples-to-apples comparison, and therefore people should be careful about drawing any sort of political conclusions from it.
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level 44
Apr 18, 2017
No one asking why Los Angeles is WAAAAAAY off the charts???
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level 46
Apr 18, 2017
Combining what others have said: third largest city in America, year-round survivable climate, social services in place = zero surprise.
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level 46
Apr 18, 2017
Not a good source
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level 71
Apr 18, 2017
For some reason I have the urge to type in Detroit every time a quiz about US cities in a negative light is featured. Sometimes it works, other times not so much.
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level 41
Apr 26, 2017
There are quite a few here so you're not wrong... Surprised it didn't make the list for sure.
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level 16
Aug 22, 2017
nice quiz check out my quizzes please
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