The pandemic worsened homelessness in Wisconsin. Advocates push for solutions — 5/25/21

Credit: Claire DeRosa / Wisconsin Watch

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Wisconsin was already struggling to address homelessness before the COVID-19 pandemic, and the public health crisis only worsened the challenge. Now, advocates are calling for lawmakers to invest in solutions, according to the Cap Times.

“But it appears the widespread action and funding commitments advocates are hoping for won’t be found in Wisconsin’s next budget,” Briana Reilly reports. “Republican lawmakers on the Legislature’s powerful Joint Finance Committee last week opted to increase funding for a housing assistance program by $1.2 million over the next two years — a fraction of the tens of millions of dollars in funding Gov. Tony Evers sought for affordable housing and aid for the homeless.” 

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Since mid-December, men experiencing homelessness in Madison have used a temporary shelter at the former Fleet Services Building. Credit: Ruthie Hauge / Cap Times

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“The growth in the crisis of homelessness has made it impossible to completely disregard.”

— Wisconsin Interagency Council on Homelessness director Michael Basford, speaking to the Cap Times

Data to Note

Click on the image above to see Wisconsin DHS COVID-19 vaccine data, which is updated daily.

Here’s a look at the Department of Health Services’ vaccine dashboard, which showed Tuesday that 47% of Wisconsinites have received at least one vaccine dose, including 82.9% of those ages 65 and older. Meanwhile, 41.1% of Wisconsinites are fully vaccinated, including 78.6% of those older than 65. Racial disparities persist in distributing vaccines. The shares of Black, Hispanic and Native American residents to receive a dose remain below that of white residents.

On Tuesday, the state DHS reported a seven-day average of 315 new daily infections, continuing a long-term downward trend in new cases. The state also reported eight new COVID-19 deaths, bringing the full toll to 6,998. 

This chart from WisContext shows how infections, deaths and hospitalizations have disproportionately affected people of color in Wisconsin.

Find a vaccine site near you

DHS and the federal government have partnered with Vaccine Finder to help Wisconsinites find vaccinations. Vaccinations are often by appointment, but providers are increasingly offering walk-in options. In addition, people seeking COVID-19 shots can text their ZIP code to 438829 to find nearby vaccine providers.

COVID-19 fact-checking

Not sure if something you heard about COVID-19 is true? offers this page full of explainers — and debunking of common distortions — about the disease to help you sort out fact from fiction.

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The pandemic worsened homelessness in Wisconsin. Advocates push for solutions — 5/25/21 is a post from, a non-profit investigative news site covering Wisconsin since 2009. Please consider making a contribution to support our journalism.

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