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County Plans to Open Homeless Tent Shelter at Health Services Complex in the Midway



The regular monthly meeting of the Midway-Pacific Highway Community Planning Board, Wednesday May 18 contained two informative presentations, one by by County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher and the other by District Attorney Summer Stephan.  Both were about the homeless issue.

The board heard about a new shelter at the County Health Services Complex on Rosecrans two months ago – heard about it – the board was not informed in advance. The members expressed some displeasure with this, which was very probably why Fletcher made his presentation.

The county plans to erect a tent that will hold 150 beds in the parking lot of the facility. The tent was donated by the Lucky Duck Foundation, according to Fletcher. The location was considered ideal because it is within the complex that houses the county psychiatric facility.

The ultimate goal of the shelter, according to Fletcher – the ultimate goal of every shelter – is to move people into permanent housing. Fletcher mentioned the conundrum facing everyone, compassion versus safety fears, and how difficult that is to navigate.

Board chair Dike Anyiwo asked Fletcher two questions: where the residents will come from and when it would open? Fletcher’s response to the first question was amorphous. Midway never seems to get a straight answer on the question of where the people will come from to fill the new shelters.

The obvious concern is that Midway has a large enough homeless population and does not need more bodies brought in. The problem is that intense outreach efforts to get people into shelters often fails miserably. Those involved will admit the success rate is low.

In order to get enough folks to agree to go into a shelter and fill the shelter to capacity, they have to bring people in from other areas.

Fletcher did answer the second question saying the plan is to open at the beginning of July.

Read the entire article here.