Point in Time Connection

From November 15 to 19, the City of Hamilton joined communities across Canada in participating in Everyone Counts: the third nationally coordinated Point-in-Time Count in Canada. This initiative, referred to locally as the Point in Time Connection, is a joint planning effort with City of Hamilton’s Housing Services Division and the local Indigenous community through the Coalition of Hamilton Indigenous Leadership (CHIL).

During the initiative, staff from community-based social services organizations conducted surveys, hearing directly from unhoused residents, to better understand the needs of people experiencing homelessness in our community. 545 surveys were completed during the week at emergency shelters, drop-in programs, community agencies, and in unsheltered locations. Indigenous led magnet event was also held in Beasley Park on November 17 to provide an opportunity for Indigenous community members to be surveyed by Indigenous surveyors.

At a later date, staff will report a comprehensive update on the influences and experiences of homelessness in our community. In keeping with the principles of Indigenous data sovereignty, as directed by the Indigenous Community Advisory Board (ICAB), CHIL will lead the analysis of Indigenous respondent data and the City of Hamilton will not use this data without the approval of the ICAB. Housing Services Division continues to prioritize collaborative work with local Indigenous leadership to develop connections to housing and supports that are culturally appropriate, rooted in the spirit and actions of reconciliation that recognize the values of autonomy and self-determination.

The goal of Hamilton’s homeless-serving System is to connect people to the housing resources that will best meet their needs to access long-term sustainable housing. The system follows the principles of housing first and relies on person-centred data to facilitate the housing process.Point in Time Connection data helps to ensure available resources are leveraged as efficiently and effectively as possible to prevent and end homelessness.  


  • Completion of the PiTC fulfilled requirements of both the Federal government’s Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy and the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing.
  • The 2021 PiTC complements existing local efforts to collect and report on key data on the state of homelessness to inform homelessness prevention and reduction efforts.
  • Hamilton was the second community in Ontario to undertake homelessness enumeration in 2016 and one of the first to put in place a Coordinated Access system underpinned by a By-Name Priority List.
  • Hamilton’s PiTC was initially planned for April 2020, however was subsequently postponed by the City of Hamilton and CHIL due to COVID-19 response and impacts, and to await further direction from Federal and Provincial Governments.
  • Unlike in previous years, no additional volunteers were recruited to support the surveying. The 2021 PiTC survey was conducted over the course of the week of November 15-19, 2021 in order to: ease the burden on agency staff working to complete the surveys and provide essential services in the community; to enable more time to safely connect with individuals and families in a variety of settings; and to avoid large gatherings to reduce the risk of infection and community spread of COVID-19 within these settings.

During the initiative, 235 volunteers and professional social service staff canvassed Hamilton’s urban, suburban and rural areas, emergency shelters, drop-in programs and community agencies. Together we surveyed 338 individuals and completed 48 family surveys. This initiative continues to support the efforts of the 20,000 Homes Campaign.

Infographic for the 2018 Point in Time Connect survey results

The Point in Time Connection continues to support a national campaign led by the Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness to house 20,000 of Canada’s most vulnerable people experiencing homelessness by July 1, 2020. Hamilton was one of the first cities in Canada to pilot 20,000 Homes.

Point in Time Connection partner/sponsor logos

2016 Survey Results

263 volunteers and professional social service staff canvassed Hamilton’s urban, suburban and rural areas, emergency shelters, hospitals and community agencies. Together we surveyed 504 individuals experiencing homelessness. Hamilton’s count continues to support the efforts of the 20,000 Homes Campaign.

Hamilton's Point in Time Count Survey Results Infographic

Contact us

Homelessness Policy & Programs
Phone: 905-546-2424 ext. 4666
Email: [email protected]