Homeless deaths in 2006: 73 through October
Last month I posted an item on the city's Homeless Death Form. The form was created by an ordinance of the board of supervisors back in June, 2005. The Newsom administration has apparently decided to discontinue issuing an annual report on the deaths of homeless people in SF. With the new Homeless Death Form operational for more than a year, I figured maybe we could cobble together our own annual report. The Department of Public Health has been helpful in their response to my original inquiry. The city's Office of Vital Records and Statistics tells me that, based on the number of Homeless Death Forms that have arrived at their office so far, through October, 2006, 73 homeless people died last year in San Francisco, an average of seven a month, which means probably around 80-90 homelesss people died in SF last year. This is more or less in line with the numbers reported in previous years, which showed that more than 100 homeless died on our streets every year. In previous years, drug and alcohol were the leading causes of death among the homeless, and it's safe to assume that's still true. I'm hoping to be able to examine the forms themselves soon to flesh out our report with that kind of detail.