COVID-19 and Homelessness Resource Guide

September 7, 2021

The Homeless Services Consortium, City of Madison, and Dane County are coordinating efforts with Public Health Madison & Dane County to develop protocols, best practices and next steps for serving people experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 pandemic. We know that people experiencing homelessness are more vulnerable to infectious disease and want to provide the most up to date information possible.


This guide is intended for homeless services providers to find resources and information on cancellations and closures in one place. It will be updated as new information comes available

Please go to Public Health Madison & Dane County for the most recent information on what is happening in our community.


Local Resources

Public Health Madison & Dane County


Educational Information

Social Distancing Poster

Outreach Card

Department of Health Services: Tips for Group Settings poster

Clinic Contact List

Local Guidance

Self Care during COVID-19

Guidance for Housing Providers

COVID-19 Screener for Housing Providers 

Shelter Guidance

COVID-19 Screener for Shelters

Vulnerable Population Hotel Referral (12/29/21 referrals are paused)608-216-2111 or

Medical Respite Center Referral for use by Medical Providers

Medical Respite Center Referral for use by Shelter and Outreach Providers 

Statements from HSC Board of Directors

Late Fees

Summary of National Resources

Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

 Infectious Disease Prevention & Response

Using CoC Program Funds for Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response

Essential Services for Encampments during an Infections Disease Outbreak

Shelter Management during an Infectious Disease Outbreak

Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

Interim Guidance for Homeless Shelters

Interim Guidance for Serving People Experiencing Unsheltered Homelessness

United States Interagency Council on Homelessness

Webinar – Infections Disease Preparedness for Homelessness Services and their Partners

Resource Page

OrgCode Consulting

Pandemic Planning and Services that Support People Who are Homeless


What Supportive Housing Providers Need to Know

Harm Reduction Coalition

COVID-19 Guidance for People Who Use Drugs and Harm Reduction Programs


Hand Washing Locations*

Safe Haven: 4006 Nakoosa Trail

Salvation Army: 630 E. Washington Ave.

The Beacon: 615 E. Washington Ave.

Central Library: 201W. Mifflin St.

Top of State Street

Peace Park: 452 State Street

Grace Church: 116 W. Washington Ave.

*locations may change as community needs change

HSC Partner Agency Announcements

Catholic Charities - Housing Navigation

Housing Navigation has resumed its presence at the Beacon in a limited capacity. Walk-in hours are from 8:30 to 12 Tuesday through Friday, and appointments are available, though we are usually booked out a few weeks. We can be reached via phone 8:30-4:30 Monday-Friday for assistance with finding housing. Please feel free to continue calling our main line (608) 826-8093 or emailing at this time.


WisCARES is still open! Wanted to give everyone a short update in case you have clients with needs we can fulfill:


  • We've reduced our hours somewhat--we're open for same-day appointments on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9am-3pm. We're checking voicemails and emails on Mondays and Thursdays.

  • We're still taking patients for urgent needs (sick animals or necessary wellness only). Please encourage clients to call before coming in so we can triage over the phone.

  • We're working to supplement folks' supply of pet food, meds, and supplies as much as we can! Please contact us by phone or email if you are in need. 

  • Our boarding and foster program is currently close to capacity but individuals that need short-term care for their animals should continue to contact us.


Questions? You can email us at or call (608)561-7387.

Friends of the State Street Family

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Friends of the State Street Family has decided to suspend our traditional street outreach program.  We are working in collaboration with area day programs as well as the shelters to identify ways we can support the work they are doing to keep our friends experiencing homelessness safe and healthy. 


  • FSSF is working to purchase and secure donations for snacks, hygiene items, and symptom treatment supplies to share with area agencies serving our friends.

  • FSSF will host outdoor distribution of essential items at set locations, Schedule TBA.

  • The FSSF Communications Line continues to operate.  We will do our best to connect essential survival gear to our friends.

Off the Square Club

Open for a limited amount of members Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am-2pm for a cap of 4 members.

Dane County Department of Human Services

The Dane County Job Center is Open! Monday – Friday 7:45-4:30

Job Service Resource Room is Open!  Monday – Friday 7:45-4:30

Dane County Department of Human Services Available Services

  • Benefit applicants are encouraged to apply for FoodShare, health care, or Wisconsin Shares Child Care Subsidy benefits using the ACCESS website. Customers can also access services by phone by calling (888) 794-5556 (voice) or 711 (TTY), Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

  • Members can check the status of programs and benefits they are enrolled in, get reminders about actions they need to take, submit and track documents, by using the simple and convenient MyACCESS mobile app. The app can be downloaded for free on the App Store or Google Play Store.

  • Customers can continue faxing documents for processing. Documents can be faxed to the Centralized Document Processing Unit (CDPU) at (855) 293-1822 (with a document tracking sheet).

  • Applicants/Members are strongly encouraged to use the MyACCESS app to upload documents when possible.

  • Documents can also be mailed to:

Centralized Document Processing Unit (CDPU)
P.O. Box 5234
Janesville, WI 53547-5234

Employment & Training Association (EATA)

Staff are meeting individuals in person at the Job Center, but still are working remotely, about 30% of the time and are then accessible by phone, Zoom and e-mail. For individuals interested in enrolling in programs, they can leave a message for:

·       LIFT Dane: (608) 242-4563

·       Children First: (608) 242-4550

·       FSET Re-Entry: (608) 242-7431

·       Windows to Work: (608) 242-4546

·       WorkSmart: (608) 288-2459

For individuals that are involved in a layoff, e-mail Renee Cephas

Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) of Dane County

Walk-in appointments are not available at this time. Phone calls and emails only. Long-term care options counseling and enrollment continue to be provided.

Information and Assistance:

Dane County Adult Protective Services

Walk-In appointments are not available at this time.

Helpline: (608) 261-9933

Madison Area Urban Ministry

Update for Monday 3/16/2020. MUM's reentry programs out of S. Park St. are open and operating. All current participants are being contacted by phone, text and email to schedule their appointments virtually. We are shifting funds normally spent on bus tickets to help with phone minutes so participants can stay in touch with us and any other organizations they need to communicate with. Our prison in-reach is happening via mail as DOC and jail visits are cancelled. People are still being released from prison and jail and most are homeless which is why we believe it is important to have our doors open. We have put in place social distancing protocols and an initial screening tool to assess for illness and a plan for anyone presenting symptoms similar to those of Covid. Our Mentoring Connections staff are working from home and in-person volunteer trainings are on hold, new volunteers can begin their training with our on-line process and training videos. Family and Reading Connections trips are cancelled until DOC lifts the visitation bans. Healing House is operating with enhanced safety protocols. Just Bakery is now providing remote learning for students and our storefront is closed but we will take orders for food delivery through the website. Students are still learning, but they are learning from home and the additional peer support and trauma services they receive are also happening via phone, email and text. Case management is happening via skype. Circles of Support will continue to provide services with program staff checking in with participants and conference call Circle meetings happening.

Our Partners for Change Luncheon scheduled for April 30th has been cancelled.

The monthly Reentry Service Fairs for March and April have been cancelled.

Domestic Abuse Intervention Services

Domestic Abuse Intervention Services is not currently able to provide walk-in services. Services for Legal Advocacy and Case Management can be done in-person and are by appointment only. Anyone in need of services can call the 24-hour Help Line at 608-251-4445.

Catholic Multicultural Center

Free Meal Program: Carry out food will be provided in the parking lot.  Hot meals are served on weekdays, and bagged lunches on weekends. Food will be served 4 - 5pm M - F; and 11:30am - 12pm Sat & Sun.

Food Pantry and Personal Essentials Pantry: Food and personal essentials will be distributed through our garage door area in the parking lot. Food pantry hours: 2 - 3:30pm Tuesday; and 10:30am - 12pm Thursday. 


Immigration Legal Services will be provided by appointment only. Please call 441-0114 to make an appointment.


Employment Search Assistance: Help with job leads, completing job applications, preparing resumes, etc. Please call 441-3257 to schedule an appointment.


English Classes (ESL): Please call 441-0117 to register and learn about class options and schedules.


Culinary Creations Food Service Training: Training classes and in-kitchen training resuming in Fall 2021. Please call 661-3512 x114 to learn more and register.

Urban League of Greater Madison

  • All large gatherings including the Teen Summer Job Fair, My Brother's Keeper Gaming & Coding Day, Economic Development & Diversity Summit, and weekly employment services information sessions have been cancelled or postponed.


  • I have directed many of our staff to begin telecommuting beginning on Monday. Our Management Team will be developing a more detailed plan on Monday to support our clients and our community. In the meantime, all of ULGM's ON-PREMISES programming at 2222 S. Park Street and 1233 McKenna Blvd. will be postponed until further notice. Our staff are working on plans to help our clients navigate community resources using remote systems. 


  • With today's closure of schools, our school-based programming is also suspended until school resumes. We will be assessing ways that our team can support schools and students remotely.


  • If you are a Schools of Hope volunteer, please note that schools are closed until at least April 6. We will keep in touch as we get closer and more information is available about the return to school


Tenant Resource Center

TRC closed.jpg