Here are some numbers on homelessness from the Madison Planning and Community Economic Development Department:
Served in Shelter in 2008: 3,894 (2,035 individuals, 636 families, including 1,310 children)
Turned away from Shelter in 2008: 3,636
These numbers suggest that there are half as many spots for the homeless in Madison as there should be. Perhaps, in addition to removing bench dividers, we should research using softer pavement, since the street seems to be the city’s recommended bed for homeless residents.