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Voters also are largely united in their displeasure with how elected officials have handled protests.

COURTESY DHM RESEARCH - Question: what do you think is the most important issue facing Portland?Oregon is in the midst of a global pandemic. Wildfires ravaged parts of the state this summer. People are losing jobs and every night there are protests on Portland's streets that often erupt into violence.

And yet, despite the multiple urgent crises to choose from, the most concerning issue for Portlanders and much of the region remains an intractable problem the area has faced for years: the number of people living without shelter.

A new poll taken for Oregon Public Broadcasting asked voters to name the most important problem facing the region: the issue mentioned most frequently was homelessness.

Christina Marcoules, of Portland, a registered Democrat, is one of the people surveyed from Oct. 7 to 11 who said homelessness remains the most pressing issue for her.

Unlike the pandemic, she said, which feels invisible in some ways, "homelessness is visual."

"There is no way you can drive in Multnomah County, Clackamas County, anywhere in the tri-county area and not see it. I think that's why it's so apparent. You can't unsee it," Marcoules said.

Oregon Public Broadcasting is a news partner of the Portland Tribune. Their full story can be found here.

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