MADISON, Wis. — “They look at all of us like we’re all bad. And I’ve been out here all morning and I’m freezing and no help whatsoever,” Karissa Schaper said.
According to the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development, homelessness in Wisconsin has declined by six percent since 2015. However, homelessness is still a real problem in Madison especially during the wintertime.
“I have heard about the decline. I think that its slim. There has been an increase in affordable housing but not to the extent where it’s no longer a problem,” Porch Light Outreach Coordinator Jessica Pastelin said.
Madison is perceived as a great city for the homeless, because of the cities resources, but there is only a limited amount of help it can give.
“We have very good resources but we only have a finite amount of resources,” Porch Light Case Reporter Melissa Guth said. “And so no matter what with people coming in they’re always going to be depleted.”
Schaper has experienced this problem firsthand.
“I’m trying to sell this picture for some food and coffee and everybody keeps ignoring me like I don’t matter and it hurts my feelings because this is my job until I can get a job and people always look down on us,” Schaper said. “Homelessness is serious. Homelessness is real. And people don’t treat us like we’re struggling. We’re struggling more than anybody else.”
While homelessness is reported to have declined, it is still a major issue for those which it effects.