From Kate Snyder, Portland, Maine <[email protected]>
Subject I don't think we should leave people out in the cold. With ~170 shelter beds coming online this month, people have someplace to go.
Date November 20, 2023 1:12 AM
  Links have been removed from this email. Learn more in the FAQ.
  Links have been removed from this email. Learn more in the FAQ.
Portland has more emergency shelter coming online this month so that people in tents have someplace to go.

View this email in your browser ([link removed])
View this email in your browser ([link removed])
November 19, 2023

Dear Portlanders,

We have a public health and public safety emergency in Portland, and I believe we can do better than amending local ordinances in order to allow winter camping in public spaces.
Instead, I believe we should:
* Not leave people out in the cold;
* Focus efforts on expanding shelter options and moving people indoors. Indeed...this is the mission* of the Encampment Crisis Response Team ([link removed])

I understand that people reject "sweeps" of encampments when there's nowhere for people in tents to go.
* But - by the end of this month there will be up to 170 new/available municipal emergency shelter beds in Portland.

Portland has added new shelter capacity so that people in tents have someplace to go.
1. Last week the City Council (finally) voted to add 50 additional beds at the Homeless Services Center (HSC) (increasing capacity from 208 to 258); and
2. City staff has worked to develop a public-private partnership in order to open a new emergency shelter for asylum seeking individuals. The new shelter at 166 Riverside, due to open on November 29th, will house up to 179 asylum seekers. What this means: asylum seekers currently in beds at the HSC will move to 166 Riverside -- thereby opening up about 120 emergency shelter beds for people currently in tents.

I hope all shelter providers will follow the City of Portland's lead by temporarily expanding emergency shelter capacity. Together we can ensure that no one is left out in the cold.

Tomorrow, the City Council will consider Council Agenda_Order 68 ([link removed]) .
Public Comment will be taken.
* Please come to City Hall and lend your voice to the issue of proposed amendments to Chapters 17, 18, and 25 of the City Code that would create a temporary exception to the City's prohibition on camping and loitering on City property and would allow unhoused people to camp on certain public property from the effective date of the amendments to April 30, 2024.

In my opinion, the goal in response to homelessness is to provide warm, safe, and supported emergency shelter to people with complex needs. Therefore, I will vote NO on Order 68.

As a municipal official, I believe it's my job to look out for all Portland residents, businesses and visitors.
I am encouraged that the City of Portland continues to make and expand commitments to ensure that people in need have access to warmth and safety, professional staff, and public health services.

I look forward to hearing from you tomorrow at the City Council Meeting,

Kate Snyder

*ECRT Mission Statement: “Everyone has a right to be treated with dignity and deserves access to safety, basic needs, shelter, and housing. Our goal is to resolve encampments by quickly connecting people to shelter and housing.”

This is the Footer for recurring info

This email was sent to [email protected] (mailto:[email protected])
why did I get this? ([link removed]) unsubscribe from this list ([link removed]) update subscription preferences ([link removed])
Mayor Kate Snyder . 389 Congress St . Portland, ME 04101-3566 . USA
Screenshot of the email generated on import

Message Analysis