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With Safer-At-Home Guidelines, Milwaukee Homeless Resource Groups Continue Work

Lauren Sigfusson
A tent encampment in downtown Milwaukee in November 2018.

It’s hard to be “safer at home” if you don’t have a home.

Homeless shelters and other social service groups around the world have struggled to keep their communities housed, clothed, and fed during the coronavirus pandemic. Not only does the virus threaten the health of homeless people themselves, transience can also spread the virus to the broader public.

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The Guest House of Milwaukee is one of the biggest organizations in the area working with homeless and disadvantaged people during this pandemic.

"On any given day, we are resourcing approximately 1,000 individuals in the community," says Amy Rowell, Guest House’s development director. "So, we started working several weeks ago on how do we maintain a safe and healthy shelter? How can we transition an area into an isolation area for those that are presenting with symptoms?"

Guest House has not only continued to provide shelter but through their case managers, they work to make sure people have groceries, medicine, and other necessary items. If you're looking for a way to support, they could also use your help.

"If you are able to safely do so, providing bag lunches and sandwiches so that we can continue to resource those to our immediate neighborhood is a great way for folks to get engaged," Rowell says. Guest House has specific instructions and guidelinesfor making sandwiches, which can be done through safer-at-home conditions. 

During this pandemic, WUWM's Bubbler Talk is focusing on the coronavirus and its impact on the Milwaukee area. If you have a question, submit it below.