Today, there are over 50,000 Veterans experiencing homelessness in the United States. In the city of Madison, there are almost 150 Veterans without permanent-supportive housing that are struggling on a daily basis to meet their most basic needs while working to improve their situation. We are fortunate to live a community that cares deeply about our population and have a variety of organizations working to end homeless, however that is not enough.
Our community lacks available housing options for these individuals as only 2% of the multifamily rental units in the area are unoccupied at any given time. This means that we have to work incredibly hard to form relationships with landlords and property managers to look beyond some of the barriers our Veterans face while considering them for tenancy. Due to this, we cannot immediately get a Veteran into a permanent-supportive housing placement and are challenged with supporting the Veteran while they are using emergency shelters, sleeping outdoors, or even utilizing local transitional housing options.
The Wayne D. Horner Memorial Veterans Stand Down will invite our veterans experiencing homelessness to a daylong event on October 17, 2020. Veterans will be welcome from Dane, Columbia, Dodge, Jefferson, Rock, Green, Iowa, and Sauk Counties. Stand Down seeks to reach all veterans experiencing homelessness in the Madison community, no matter the duration served or circumstances of discharge.