At least 207 people died in Oregon while experiencing homelessness this year, from January through June.
The Register-Guard first reported the numbers released on an Oregon Health Authority dashboard, after Senate Bill 850 required all Oregon counties to track how many people die without shelter. The data tracking started in January, which was also the month that the most people died.
Data show disparities among various demographics. Four times more men died than women, and 75% of the people who died were older than 45. Only one juvenile was reported. Less than half of the deaths happened in a medical or care facility.
Some populations were disproportionately impacted. Indigenous people experiencing homelessness died at a rate nearly six times higher than white Oregonians experiencing homelessness. Black people died at a rate nearly twice as high as white people who were also unhoused.
Medical officials listed 154 of the deaths as “natural” and 32 as “unintentional injury.” A small number were caused by homicide and suicide. Numbers for June are still being reported. The Oregon Health Authority said an annual reporting dashboard should be available in fall of next year.