Monday, May 27, 2013

Jacksonville homeless center moving forward

A day center to help homeless people in downtown Jacksonville could open in early July.

Renovations at a 3,000-square-foot building started about a week ago. A “soft opening” is scheduled July 1, though some renovations may still be underway then.

The center would be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the daytime -- when traditional shelters are closed -- as a place homeless people can find washing machines, showers and services that might help them line up jobs, homes or other needs.

Advocates say a downtown center could help limit problems with loitering, petit theft and panhandling downtown. Misdemeanor arrests in the core city will be tracked after the center opens to test whether there’s any change, said Dawn Gilman, executive director of the Emergency Services and Homeless Coalition of Northeast Florida and president of the day center.

Read the Florida Times-Union report here.


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