DeKalb reaches milestone for helping homeless veterans

Homeless veterans in DeKalb County are receiving permanent housing and quick access to services, according to government officials.

Officials announced last week that DeKalb is the first county in Georgia to achieve a milestone called "functional zero" for veteran homelessness, meaning any homeless veteran who will accept housing will receive it.

Interim DeKalb CEO Lee May said the county housed 378 veterans so far this year through September by finding them permanent housing, distributing federal supportive housing vouchers and connecting veterans to other programs.

The county's functional zero status was confirmed by the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

To qualify for the designation, DeKalb showed that the average time it takes to permanently house veterans who were willing to accept housing is less than 90 days and that the community has sufficient housing capacity, along with other benchmarks.