Housing Inequality in Stanislaus County

Housing Inequality in Stanislaus County


A problem in our community, more specifically in Stanislaus County, is housing inequality. In the 2020 Stanislaus County Point-in-Time (PIT) Count, 2,107 people (207 of this report being children) were experiencing homelessness. 

Team Information
Team 1 - Ethan & Maria

About the Problem

Problem Category


Problem Context

The city with the most homeless people was Modesto, with a reported total of 1592 people, which is 75% of Stanislaus County’s report. If everyone was able to have shelter and a place to stay, then we would all have the stability to address other problems if needed. For example, unemployment, addiction, mental illness, and physical health. If everyone had housing and a support system, they would be able to stabilize their lives and increase self-sufficiency.

How did you identify this problem?

We identify Housing Inequalities as a problem because many people have experienced homelessness nor have any sort of home when looking at the numbers. Communities have not historically been designed to drive and sustain population-level reductions in homelessness. 

Problem Details

Who are those affected by this problem?

The people who are impacted by this problem are the people who do not have the resources, such as but not limited to food, shelter, and any sort of support. Also, 8% of all homeless people in Stanislaus County are currently escaping or are survivors are domestic abuse victims, 5% are unable to pay rent/mortgage, 5% are homeless due to illness (Self or Family), 5% are asked to leave, 5% are from alcohol/substance abuse, and 5% are from a lost job or could not find work.

How often does this problem occur?

This problem occurs quite often in Stanislaus County; 80% of the homeless people become homeless in Stanislaus County. It is not such a good thing because every year since 2016, the numbers have risen by 10%. 

How long has the problem been going on?

This problem has been going on for a long time. Homelessness has started being a problem in California since the 1980s. So, about 42 years.

Is the problem disrupting the community? How?

This problem disrupts the community because communities in Modesto have gone absent with the rise of Homeless encampments. There are unusable public structures (bridges, parks, etc.) that should be available to the public but can no longer be used because the homeless make multiple shelters with general commodities. 

Is the issue perceived as a problem by the community at large?

Yes, this issue is perceived as a problem by the community at large because when traveling along the 99 Freeway, which runs through a majority of Stanislaus County, there are multiple homeless trying to get shelter. There are also many standing/sitting outside stores asking for money and sleeping on the sidewalks at night.

Is the problem limited to certain geographic areas?

No, the problem is not limited to Stanislaus county but it is spread across the United States. 750,000 Americans are homeless on any given night, with one in five of them considered chronically homeless. Although, as stated previously, Modesto, CA (one of the biggest cities in Stanislaus County) has 1592 homeless people, which is 75% of Stanislaus County’s report. 

Who are the Stakeholders, those wanting this problem to be fixed?

The people who wish to address this problem set are a small group inside Modesto. The “Camp2home” program provides a path to self-sufficiency for people trying to rebuild their lives out of homelessness through five different initiatives. Such as Outreach, Shelters, Job Training, Permanent Employment, and ultimately Permanent Housing. 

Addressing the Problem

Are you aware of any solutions, approaches, or efforts to tackle this problem?

What are the obstacles you are aware of to address the problem?

The blocks I am aware of addressing this issue are that some homeless people are content with being lost and want no help. I am also aware that a lot of people are against helping the homeless because they believe they put themselves in that position due to laziness, drugs, or substance problems/addiction. 

What are the success criteria that could be defined to address this problem?

In terms of success, although a minor one, it could be defined as lowering the number of homeless. Stanislaus County Reports that 80% of the homeless first became homeless. Even if it’s minimal, it would be considered successful if that number becomes 79% or even lower. Also, 59% of households without children are unsheltered. That is too high of a number and if it was to get below 50% that would be considered a success.