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BC Housing Correction – Province Adding Over 2000 Temporary Weather Response Shelters For The Winter – Portal is NOT in the Mix

Victoria/Fraser Valley – This winter, the Province is providing more than 1,900 temporary shelter spaces and nearly 360 extreme weather response shelter spaces to ensure people experiencing homelessness have a warm place to sleep and can get out of the cold and rain. These emergency shelters supplement more than 2,250 permanent year-round shelter spaces open throughout B.C.

The temporary shelters will be open every night during the season, many of them around the clock, with meals provided. Some have already opened, with more opening this month and later this season.

The original media release sated that the Portal Shelter in Chilliwack was available. That facility was mired in controversy when it was operated by RAN Ruth and Naomi’s. The Margaret Avenue Location in Chilliwack is to augment the existing RAN.

FVN reached out to MLA Dan Coulter and BC Housing for clarification. Tim Chamberlain of BC Housing told FVN that the statement was in error. The Portal lost its Temporary use permit earlier this year.

Other facilities are in co-operation with various municipal governments and or BC Housing and/or PCRS.

Abbotsford

  • 1661 McCallum Rd. – 15 spaces
  • 2616 Ware St. – 12 spaces
  • 2317 McKenzie Rd. – six spaces
  • 1640 Riverside Rd. – 30 spaces
  • 1670 Riverside Rd. – four spaces
  • 33264 Old Yale Rd. – five spaces

Chilliwack

  • 46130 Margaret Ave. – 71 spaces
  • 45845 Wellington Ave. – 12 spaces

Merritt

  • 2350 Voght St. – 17 spaces

Mission

  • 32550 Logan Ave. – six spaces

The extreme weather response shelters, which typically open each year from Nov. 1 until March 31, are available overnight when a community issues an extreme weather alert. This year, the Province gave non-profit groups access to funding as early as Oct. 1 to allow shelters to open in communities already experiencing extreme weather.

Communities outline what weather conditions warrant an extreme weather alert and determine the number of extreme weather spaces to activate on any night, depending on the capacity of existing shelters and the estimated need.

These emergency shelter programs are made possible through partnerships with communities and non-profit groups throughout the province to provide temporary but immediate places to stay for anyone who is experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

More shelters may be added throughout the winter when needed.

In addition to these shelters, BC Housing has partnered with health authorities, municipalities and other housing partners to secure more than 1,900 additional spaces in 43 communities, where people experiencing homelessness can self-isolate and recover from COVID-19.

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