Toward Equity: Understanding Black Californians’ Experiences of Homelessness

While 7% of California’s population identifies as Black, Black Californians represent more than a quarter of the state’s homeless population. The overrepresentation of Black communities in the homeless population arises from centuries of anti-Black racism, embedded in policies and practices. To better understand the experiences of Black Californians experiencing homelessness, the UCSF Benioff Homelessness and Housing Initiative examined the experience of Black Californians within the California Statewide Study of People Experiencing Homelessness (CASPEH), the largest representative study of homelessness since the mid-1990s. This report reviews who experiences homelessness in the Black community, what may have precipitated their homelessness, experiences during their episode of homelessness, and what impacts their return to permanent housing. These findings aim to inform evidence-based solutions for preventing and ending homelessness for Black Californians. 

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