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Chronic homelessness rises sharply in western Massachusetts

Three people stand in front of a tent village in the woods
Josh Landes
Three occupants of a tent village in Pittsfield's Springside Park in 2021.

The increase is one of the continuing effects of the pandemic

Overall homelessness in the four counties of western Massachusetts remained at about the same level as last year according to the point-in-time census taken last February.

But the latest data shared at a recent gathering of activists, lawmakers, government officials, and housing specialists, revealed a near doubling of the number of chronically homeless people.

WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Pamela Schwartz, Director of the Western Massachusetts Network to End Homelessness.