Arizona Saw Largest Increase in Homeless Youths in 2022, State Senate Republican Caucus Considers Addressing the Issue

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) recent Annual Homeless Assessment Report showed that Arizona had the largest increase in homeless youths in 2022, becoming the state with the fourth-highest percentage of minors living outside a home.

In response, Kim Quintero, the spokeswoman for the State Senate Republican Caucus, told The Arizona Sun Times that the caucus is considering legislation that would recognize unaccompanied homeless youths under 18 “need legal rights to access housing, shelters, and other basic services.”

“We currently have similar legislation on the books allowing any emancipated minor, any minor who has contracted a lawful marriage or any homeless minor to provide consent to the furnishing of hospital, medical and surgical care. We are looking at taking similar steps to provide critical protections, such as empowering minors experiencing homelessness to enter into contracts and to consent to shelter services,” Quintero said via email.

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