123. Is There A Homeless Coordinator In the VA?

1n3d33cab4k2ibcatoltasca80q55acapvd13ocay9gqf3ca6l0v2yca1ho7zjcaf0qodwcagclom6cad2zlbwcaefhqowca7el2crcadrvy23cakyrwlvcacffws5cabnuienca1dcndvcagxl01vca27ueuo.jpg I was back again around the VA hospital getting poked and prodded in Seattle, Washington. I was thinking about the eligibility check-in desk personnel, the homeless coordinators and a thought struck me…

If the VA cannot find and / or will not identify the homeless veterans inside their own hospital, I began thinking about the Point In Time counts HUD holds every January that the VA hold so sacred.

Here in Seattle, one thing stands out. It takes two to three months to correlate the data of homeless from inside the emergency and transitional shelters. It took one evening for volunteers to count 2,300 unsheltered homeless people.

If the VA and HUD were truly demanding accurate information, they would not be presenting half assed information before Congress and saying it was “de-duplicated” by a “Blue Ribbon” panel of experts, when it was collected by people little training and sent out on an Easter egg hunt.  

HUD relies on volunteers to count the homeless. The VA relies on HUD so they say. The VA has decided that it will not count the number of claims that they pay, to individual states, counties, or through themselves. They will just use guesstimate that HUD comes up with and present that that to Congress and use that to influence the CHALENG report and other future memos.

That means in turn that all Operation Stand Down information, all voluntary walk in of Homeless Veterans to the VA, all law enforcement reporting, and other social service reporting is probably out the window as far as the VA is concerned.

If data was truly and properly reported to Congress, the VA would have to put that homeless veteran number way above that 2003 under estimate level of over 300,000.

What the heck is a homeless veteran coordinator coordinating? It sounds like everyone is keeping the homeless veteran away from them. In Seattle at least that is what is going on. That this probably repeats itself daily in the VA system is not surprising either.



2 Responses to “123. Is There A Homeless Coordinator In the VA?”

  1. March 1, 2008 at 12:37 am

    I believe that one of the reasons the numbers that VA presents to Congress is so that the public at large doesn’t become aware of just how many homeless there really are. It would create public outrage, and Congress doesn’t want that since it prefers to continue wastefully throwing away taxpayer dollars on their pork barrel spending.

  2. 2 AnAmerican
    March 1, 2008 at 10:08 pm

    We have seen how the VA monitors itself with the not so distant exposure of the horrnedous conditions at Walter Reed for our active veterans. I can’t imagine they are doing any better reporting the masses of homeless veterans. After reading about the hoops folks have to jump through with this government agency it is abundantly clear to me that there is no measure of quality assurance for data collection nor is there is any type of accountablity for their services that are supposedly designated to serve those who are homeless. There needs to be a total overhaul of the current system with replacement of personnel who actually are invested in doing what they are paid to do and who have a sincere interest in the welfare of all veterans.

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