Services to be removed from Kelowna homeless shelter site: city

People who were staying at the overnight shelter location on Recreation Avenue will now have to move. Global News

The City of Kelowna has announced that the temporary outdoor shelter on Recreation Avenue will be losing many of its services.

The city has now deemed the site unsustainable. This comes after the security firm tasked with monitoring the site has chosen not to renew their contract because of what it says is unacceptable liability.

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“I think with the security team not renewing their contract because they’re unable to manage all these people, it’s dangerous,” said Dena Berabash, a Kelowna resident.

The city will be removing the warming tents, storage facilities and harm-reduction tent on Monday. 

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The city hopes to move many of these homeless people indoors in the coming weeks.

With the bridge-housing facility on Fuller Avenue opening this past week with 40 beds, overnight shelter spaces have opened up for people sleeping outside.

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The city says 26 temporary indoor sheltering spaces will become available at existing shelters to accommodate people next week. 

It says these temporary spaces are a holdover until the Welcome Inn opens at the end of January.

The Welcome Inn will be a wet-housing facility and an emergency overnight shelter for people in need.

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“It’s great and long overdue, I’ve seen that building,” said Tom, a Kelowna resident. “I’ve told people at the city, ‘we could have 20 people in there. Why is it empty?’ It’s ridiculous.” 

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The facility will provide another 20-40 indoor spaces for overnight shelter.

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