Posts Tagged ‘homelessness’

Single Occupancy Residences for homeless

October 30, 2009

I had the pleasure of stopping by Rainbow Books last Friday for a chat with Ald. Marsha Rummel. I didn’t know she was one of the founders of the co-op, however, I suspected that if I didn’t find her there I’d at least find somebody who knew where she was. The Leftist conspiracy is a tight-knit one.

Rummel, one of the most vocal supporters of Madison’s homeless population, told me that what Madison needs is more Single Occupancy Residences (SOR). SORs are better than shelters, many of which are unsanitary and unwelcoming. “Many people prefer to sleep in their cars” than to go to the church or the Porchlight public shelter.

Rummel also told me that, in order to break up settlements of vagrants (see comment below) living in cars, she pushed for an ordinance to create two hour parking on the two concerned blocks of E. Wilson.

Not enough money for homelessness

October 13, 2009

Of the nearly $200 million Dane County received in the federal stimulus plan, $574,000 was allocated for “Homelessness Prevention.”

Considering that the city of Madison currently turns down nearly half of those seeking shelter, it is good to see that there is some recognition of the poorest people during the recession, however, the number is still pitifully low. Compare that to the $40 million for airport improvements.

In addition, homelessness prevention should be coupled with additional shelter units for the thousands of people who are already destitute.

Homelessness in Madison

October 12, 2009

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.