The Latest: VA chief sets timeline to end vet homelessness

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Posted: Jan 05, 2017 4:22 PM
The Latest: VA chief sets timeline to end vet homelessness

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Latest on the effort to end homelessness among veterans (all times local):

4:20 p.m.

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald says he expects homelessness among veterans to be solved "within a couple of years."

He made the comments Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press in which he called on his agency and its partners to house as many veterans as possible in 30 days.

He describes President Barack Obama's pledge to end veteran homelessness as an "audacious goal" that has galvanized people. He says it hasn't been met yet because there were more homeless vets than anyone thought.

McDonald says that as outreach and data collection improved, officials realized estimates of homeless veterans were low.

Federal officials say veteran homelessness has been effectively ended in Virginia, Connecticut and Delaware.

About two dozen nonprofits, government officials and homeless veterans in 17 states spoke with the AP about the effectiveness of the effort and challenges they faced.

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3:30 p.m.

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald is calling on his agency and its partners to house as many veterans as possible in 30 days.

McDonald told The Associated Press in an interview Thursday that homelessness typically increases after the holidays and that winter is a tough time for the homeless.

He describes President Barack Obama's pledge to end veteran homelessness as an "audacious goal" that has galvanized people. He says it hasn't been met yet because there were more homeless vets than anyone thought.

McDonald says that as outreach and data collection improved, officials realized estimates of homeless veterans were low.

Federal officials say veteran homelessness has been effectively ended in Virginia, Connecticut and Delaware.

About two dozen nonprofits, government officials and homeless veterans in 17 states spoke with The Associated Press about the effectiveness of the effort and challenges they faced.

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10:30 a.m.

Pledges by President Barack Obama and a national nonprofit organization to end homelessness among veterans did not meet their goal.

Federal officials say homelessness among veterans has been effectively ended in Virginia and Connecticut. But many veterans still sleep on the streets elsewhere in the country.

Nonprofits helping the homeless say the lack of available affordable housing is the reason why. But as Obama's term ends, advocates call the push a success because many homeless veterans did get homes, and the ambitious goal created urgency.

About two dozen nonprofits, government officials and homeless veterans in 17 states spoke with The Associated Press about the effectiveness of the effort and the challenges they faced.