Winter shelter opens early to meet demandThe Associated Press | November 03,2013BRATTLEBORO — A winter shelter for the homeless in Brattleboro will open today, a month earlier than usual because of increased demand that some say was brought about by federal budget cuts.
Lucie Fortier who runs the daytime shelter at the Brattleboro Area Drop In Center, said when she arrives at 8 a.m. each day there is usually a crowd of up to 10 people waiting to get in.
“A lot of them are sleeping along the river bank, some are camping under the bridges,” she said. “Our people need to have a safe place to sleep.”
The Drop In Center also sponsors the overnight winter shelter in the Baptist Church on Main Street. It’s funded by donations and a state grant, Vermont Public Radio reports, and it’s run by volunteers, social service agencies and the local interfaith clergy group.
People are calling to ask when the shelter will open and if there is any place else they can stay until it opens, Fortier said. “The demand is just there,” she said.
But there aren’t many options because programs have been squeezed by federal budget cuts and federal housing subsidies are frozen, she said.
In Brattleboro an anti-camping ordinance and a crackdown on railroad property has made it even harder to live outside.
While the numbers of homeless people were fairly level statewide over the past year, in Brattleboro the number has gone up 12 percent, said Angus Chaney, who heads the Vermont Council on Homelessness.
The Brattleboro winter shelter served 172 people in the six months it was open last year, including five families and at least eight children, Fortier said.MORE IN Vermont NewsMONTPELIER — This weekend will mark the official unveiling of the “Lost Shul,” an Eastern... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day 1739, 'Richard Palmer' identified in prison at York Castle as the notorious outlaw DICK TURPIN; IN 1836, Battle of the Alamo begins near San Antonio de Bexar, Texas; 1896, the Tootsie Roll invented by LEO HIRSCHFELD.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1472, Orkney, Shetland islands put up as collateral by Norway to Scotland in lieu of dowry for MARGARET OF DENMARK on her marriage with JAMES III, king of Scotland; 1962, JOHN GLENN first American to orbit Earth.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City mayoral candidates debate campaign issues; Hartford, Conn., woman still missing; Neal Goswami reports attempts to legislate suicide; local woman loses 100 pounds through TOPS program.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1878, JOHN TUNSTALL murdered near Lincoln, New Mexico, by the outlaw JESSE EVANS; in 1930, ELM FARM OLLIE first cow to fly in aircraft, first to be milked airborne; 1955, nuke test WASP; '79, snow in Sahara.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Rutland Herald News Editor Alan J. Keays and staff writer Gordon Dritschilo discuss stories planned for the February 18, 2015, edition of the newspaper: Winter budgets maxed, legal marijuana, Springfield bank job, USPS slowdown
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1249 AD, ANDRE of LONGJUMEAU is dispatched by LOUIS IX of France to meet the KHAGAN, ruler of the Mongol Empire; in 1804, during 1st Barbary War, STEPHEN DECATUR scuttles the pirate-held USS Philadelphia in Tripoli.