Gilliland: Temecula’s progress with homeless skewed by PIT count numbers

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Temecula sheriff’s deputies interview a number of homeless individuals at an encampment in the hills west of Temecula near Rancho California Road. Valley News/Shane Gibson photo
Lost amongst the worldwide coronavirus pandemic and protests lamenting the death of George Floyd and subsequent Black Lives Matter movement was the release of Riverside County’s Homeless Point-in-Time Count results. Countywide, there was a 3% increase in homeless individuals, a total of 2,884 with 2,155 unsheltered and 729 sheltered. The count, conducted over four hours Jan. 29, by teams of volunteers and city and county officials, is conducted each year to gauge the progress of groups that work exclusively with the homeless population. But as Robin Gilliland, homeless outreach administrator for the city of Temecula said, the numbers can be misleading. “As you know, the point-in-time count is just a snapshot,” she said. “It’s a four-hour snapshot, so, it’s never com
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