Transitional housing plan to tackle homeless crisis in Sudbury
SUDBURY -- Sudbury City Council recently approved a new transitional housing program.
There was unanimous support for a plan to support and house people who are homeless. The plan also includes services to help with mental health and addictions.
"People are dying every day from opioid overdoses. People don't have places to live while coping with addictions and mental health issues, so we need to provide housing, a roof over people's heads, a pillow to put their heads down on, and supportive care for when they are ready to receive it," said City Councillor Deb McIntosh.
Sudbury city councillors are joining forces with other agencies taking action on the opioid and homelessness crisis in Sudbury.
"(With) the opioid crisis - which is real throughout northern Ontario - we felt it was very important to get this up and going immediately," said Sudbury City Councillor Bill Leduc.
The transitional housing facility will be staffed by a community treatment team lead by Health Sciences North (HSN).
The plan includes a proposed multi-unit residential building for 40 to 60 people.
"All kinds of services under one roof. It will be a 16-hour operation per day, servicing the mental health, the addictions, the chronic homelessness in our city. It will have training, it will have educational -everything that goes along with our transitional housing," Leduc said.
McIntosh highlighted the fact the idea is a collaborative one with many agencies uniting to make a change.
"It's not just city council or a few councillors. Our staff have been incredible in this effort, and social services and community services. And also agencies, (Canadian Mental Health Association), the police and HSN, have been incredibly helpful," McIntosh said.
Right now, the councillors confirm city staff is looking at potential sites.
Council is also hopeful for long-term funding for the program in the upcoming provincial budget.