2022 Edition — People Experiencing Homelessness in California

Almanac Quick Reference Guide

The number of people experiencing homelessness served by California’s homelessness response system (Continuums of Care) increased from 188,000 in 2017 to 255,000 in 2020.

This quick reference guide looks at available data on people experiencing homelessness (PEH) in California and at their hospital and emergency department use.

Key findings include:

  • In 2020, 42% of PEH reported a disabling condition (which includes physical, mental, or emotional impairment that has a long-term disabling effect; a developmental disability; HIV/AIDS; or injury or illness incurred or aggravated during military service).
  • In California, 22% of PEH were under 18, and 21% of PEH were 55 or over in 2020.
  • While PEH represented 0.1% of the California population, they accounted for 3.1% of all hospitalizations in 2020.
  • Black people represented 30% of PEH and 20% of PEH who were hospitalized.