2020 LA County homeless count: Volunteers hit streets of San Gabriel, San Fernando valleys

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Scores of volunteers hit the streets Tuesday for the annual Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count, an effort designed to provide more help to the homeless population.

The volunteers will canvas more than 80 cities and 200 communities across L.A. County over three days to count the number of homeless people living on the streets, according to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority.

On Tuesday, volunteers focused on the San Gabriel and San Fernando valleys. Other swaths of the region, such as the South Bay and Antelope Valley, would be covered Wednesday and Thursday.

LA County using new technology to track homeless population density, future housing in the works
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New technology tracking the real-time density of homeless populations and future housing in the works across Los Angeles County was unveiled at the Board of Supervisors meeting.

L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti joined LAHSA officials Tuesday night in North Hollywood to formally kick off the event.

"Angelenos are coming together across L.A. County to confront homelessness and the housing crisis because we believe that the future of our homeless brothers and sisters is part of our city's identity,'' Garcetti said in a video posted to his Twitter page on Sunday. "We want to help them get back on their feet and because we know every single person in this city matters, whether they have a permanent address or not.''

Thousands volunteer for 2019 homeless count in Los Angeles
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Thousands of volunteers took to the streets of Los Angeles for the first night of the homeless count.

Officials said they were still in need of volunteers to help canvas the region.

Last year's count found that nearly 59,000 people were experiencing homelessness countywide, an increase of 12% from 2018. Officials say the count is important because it will help to better understand how large the homeless crisis has become since then.

The federal government requires a count every other year but Los Angeles conducts its count annually.
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