LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Federal and Clark County agencies rolled out an effort Friday to address homelessness among those who served.

It comes amid worrying numbers showing a 60% increase in Clark County for the homeless veteran population, according to the Department of Veteran Affairs.

“We do not want to see any of our homeless veterans in the street. We want to put them in permanent housing,” Deputy Veteran Affairs Secretary Tanya Bradsher said.

Bradsher toured the North Las Vegas VA Medical Center on Friday. She shared numbers during a press conference based on a 2023 homeless count.

The VA and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department participated in the count, which estimated the veterans unhoused population at 912.

“We’re also seeing those veterans that are in fixed-income environments, having a harder time keeping up with the bills they currently have,” Bradsher said.

Part of the problem they cited is a lack of affordable housing, but that’s when partnerships with other community organizations come in handy.

“We are able to achieve ‘Functional Zero’ but we can’t do it alone. It is a collaborative effort,” Kelly Rupp, who is a VA coordinator with homeless programming, said.

‘Functional Zero’ is a program aimed at not having homeless veterans. Sixty-nine veterans in the last 90 days have spent one night in a Clark County shelter, according to the VA.

“When they are ready, we do have housing programs that we can place them into for transitional housing on a road to permanent housing,” Rupp said.

Rupp says they plan to use an outpatient van, one of only 25 in the country, to bring care to veterans who aren’t ready to leave the streets.

According to the VA, veterans make up about 9 percent of the homeless population in Clark County.


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