During the 2016 federal fiscal year in Wisconsin, 22,050 people experiencing homelessness received services and shelter from providers that use the state’s tracking system. Homelessness is not just a Milwaukee or Madison concern, nor is it limited to single adults: 58% of Wisconsinites receiving homeless services lived outside Milwaukee and Dane counties, and 46% were members of a family with minor children. Approximately 9% of those receiving services were veterans. Homelessness not only causes poor outcomes for the families and individuals affected; it can be costly for taxpayers in terms of emergency shelter costs, medical expenses, criminal justice system intervention, and other public services. Children who experience homelessness are particularly vulnerable to negative outcomes and more likely to become homeless as adults. This seminar provided an overview of the state of homelessness in Wisconsin, including information about who is homeless and the funding sources currently used to address the problem. In addition, the seminar highlighted the work of researchers who have decades of experience studying evidence-based, cost-effective ways to reduce and prevent homelessness.
The Wisconsin Family Impact Seminars are an initiative of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor’s Office and Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs, with financial contributions from Phyllis M. Northway.
Who is Homeless in Wisconsin? A Look at Statewide Data
by Adam Smith
Wisconsin Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) Director, Institute for Community Alliances
What Interventions Work Best for Homeless Families? Impacts and Cost Estimates from the Family Options Study
by Jill Khadduri
Senior Fellow and Principal Associate, Social and Economic Policy, Abt Associates
Ending Homelessness: What the Research Says It Will Take
by Martha Burt
Affiliated Scholar, Urban Institute and Principal, MRB Consulting
State of Wisconsin Funding and Fund Sources for Homelessness (Report Chapter, pdf)
by Rachel Janke, Wisconsin Legislative Fiscal Bureau