“The Racine Interfaith Coalition has already stepped up and notified its congregations about the need,” Thomas said.
Lorenzen said extra money should help, just like extra space would.
But if the budget shortfall isn’t dealt with, HALO might have to cut some of the support services it provides. Caseworkers there currently help connect homeless people with substance abuse counseling, job training, and parenting classes.
Lorenzen thinks the only feasible, long-term fix to the overcrowding is an increase in affordable housing in the Racine area.
Lorenzen noted some of the people staying at the shelter, who are maintaining jobs, haven’t been able to find apartments to move into.
“I think we as a community really need to be looking at affordable housing, and some of the prevention strategies that we can use to stop the flow of people coming into the shelter,” Lorenzen said.