Advocates calling for more Utah overflow shelters to help homeless

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – With temperatures hovering around freezing this week, there will be a lot of eyes on homeless encampments. Advocates say shelters are filling up quickly because of the cold weather, and they may need to open up overflow shelters.

Unsheltered advocates tell ABC4 they need to fill positions in places like the Catholic Community Services, the Road Home, and Volunteers of America, and if they don’t get those jobs filled fast, they won’t be able to get some of these overflow facilities open in time for the bitter cold.

Sleeping bags, snow boots, gloves, pants, socks, underwear, and Winter Coats are all in high demand according to Catholic Community Services Basic Needs Director Randy Chappell.

“The biggest needs obviously with homeless individuals is warm clothes,” he says. “If somebody is sleeping outside, hopefully, we don’t have many sleeping outside but, if someone does sleep outside they can stay warm through the night.”

Volunteers of America is handing out vouchers for motels and hotels to women facing homelessness.

The Road Home already opening its overflow shelter at the St. Vincent de Paul Dining Hall housing roughly 60 people beginning at 6:30p each night.

Executive Director Michelle Flynn tells ABC4, “When the Salt Lake Coalition to End Homelessness and elected leaders determine an additional winter shelter option, staffing and funding will play into the ability to open and operate”

Staffing is key to opening more overflow shelters during the winter months.

Chappell adds, “There are positions that we can fill, we just need the community’s help with that and support.”

To apply for open positions, visit the links below:

Catholic Community Services

Volunteers of America

The Road Home

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