New Jersey’s emergency and transitional shelters -- shelters that operate on a first-come, first-served basis -- house 6,078 people, according to the U.S. 2010 Census. Of these individuals, 65 percent are male and 35 percent are female.
The vast majority of people living in these shelters are adults, although there are 18.4 percent under 18 years of age.
The U.S. Census Bureau is careful to say that these numbers do not constitute the homeless population, nor do they include those who may be taking advantage of public shelters due to a natural disaster. It is merely a headcount of those availing themselves of shelters provided by the government, churches, or nonprofit institutions at any one time.