Peggy A. West, 12th District County Board supervisor, said that she started “Sleep Out Saturday” three years ago to protest insufficient funding for homeless shelters.
“There was not enough money in the budget for the shelter systems,” West said. “There are around 1,200 people in Milwaukee trying to get into shelters. There’s just not enough beds.”
West, along with advocates, members of the faith community and volunteers, slept at Clarke Square Park on Saturday night to draw attention to homelessness. Organizers collected donated clothes and personal items to distribute to homeless individuals at the event, which also included a community meal and workshops.
With the help of community volunteers and organizations including Hunger Task Force, Street Angels Milwaukee Outreach, the Cathedral Center, Mr. Bob’s Under the Bridge and many more, West said that “Sleep Out Saturday” has helped raise $300,000 for shelter systems.