From 2016 to 2017, the number of people experiencing homelessness increased for the first time in seven years. Furthermore, there was an increase in the number of people experiencing unsheltered homelessness. But the issue isn’t uniform across the country; some areas have dramatically higher levels of homelessness than others. The highest rates of unsheltered homelessness are in cities like Los Angeles, San Jose, Oakland, and Las Vegas: warm-weather cities with affordable housing issues.
The Social Needs Index is a new data layer added to PolicyMap that combines several indicators commonly used to illustrate social need into a simple 1 to 10 relative ranking.
In 2015, 68 percent of students graduating from four-year colleges had student loan debt, with an average debt of $30,100. Studies suggest 40% of borrowers may default on federal loans in 20 years. Knowing the geographic variation of this debt can help researchers and policymakers understand the extent of the issue.
New and Updated Data
- Flu activity data from the CDC is updated to the 2017-2018 flu season.
- Homelessness data by continuum of care boundaries (including many cities, counties, and metropolitan areas).
- Electric Generating Plants and Electricity Generation Capacity from the Energy Information Administration are both updated to 2018.
- Industry-specific employment data at the ZIP code and county level from Census County Business Patterns is updated to 2016.
- School district data including pupil/teacher ratios, English Language Learners, students in an Individualized Education Program, and Free and Reduced Price Lunch Program participants from the National Center for Education Statistics is updated to the 2015-2016 school year.
- Monthly building permits data from the Census Residential Construction Branch is updated through March 2018. Annual permits are updated through 2017.
- Medically Underserved Areas (MUAs), from the Health Resources and Services Administration are updated to July 2018.
- Cancer data by type, race, and age, are updated to 2011-2015.