Rose Haven Day Center worked through the heatwave by providing water, tarps, and tents to the homeless, which impacted our Rose Haven guests.
Liz Starke was the final employee to leave Rose Haven last week when a woman who lives in a tent across the street rang the doorbell. The woman was “hysterical,” Starke recalled. In this case, the woman knew an ex-partner, who she said abused her, was getting released from prison soon — and she was worried about what services would be available. She was also worried about the pending heatwave.
Research shows women and LGBTQ+ people are among the most vulnerable to housing insecurity and homelessness. That is particularly acute in Oregon, which has one of the highest rates of people who experience unsheltered homelessness, meaning they live outside, including in tents or in cars instead of in shelters or other housing.
In Multnomah County, data from 2019 shows the number of people experiencing homelessness who are gender non-conforming grew more than any other group. And still, the research acknowledges a potential undercounting because of factors like stigmatization and discrimination.
Photo credit to Southern Methodist University Geothermal Map of America