More than half of the people experiencing homelessness in Oxford County became homeless during the past 12 months, according to a survey conducted last week by Social Planning Council Oxford volunteers.

Stephanie Ellis-Clark, the executive director of the council, said the organization could not definitively say at this point if this increase in homelessness is entirely COVID related but noted the numbers are alarming.

“It was surprising to see 55 per cent of people we talked with had entered homelessness in the last year. It’s very significant. … We can’t say it’s necessarily because of COVID, but it’s interesting it’s that many since March.”