The City of Red Deer’s Emergency Operations Centre has signed an emergency order to allow the temporary emergency shelter at Cannery Row to continue operating.
The shelter, which was set to close Sept. 30, will now be able to operate for the duration of the state of local emergency, including any renewals or until this order is revoked.
“The decision to put the emergency order in place to allow the operations of the temporary shelter at the Cannery Row site did not come easy, we took into consideration the current outbreak status among our vulnerable population, the pressures on our emergency response services and the ability to support community-based outbreak protocols,” said Ken McMullen, director of emergency management.
“We want to make sure our vulnerable population have access to care and resources, with the intent of diverting non-emergent issues from the hospital.
“The site will allow us to monitor, test and mitigate any further community-based spread and increased dependency on our already strained health supports.”
A third-party organization will continue to operate the shelter, with the provincial government to continue funding the operations, the City of Red Deer announced Thursday. Mitigation strategies implemented in May will continue in the area while the temporary shelter is operational.
“We have extended the mitigation tactics in place to mirror the timeframe of the order, tactics such as security, cleanup, area liaison and fencing will continue for the time being to help minimize issues faced by surrounding residents and businesses,” said McMullen.
“Our number one goal here is to keep our community safe and minimize the spread while protecting our healthcare system. We are in a situation where hard decisions need to be made to protect all Red Deerians, and we believe that this order will help meet our goal.”
The ability to implement the order comes following the state of local emergency enacted on Sept. 17 for up to 60 days by the Emergency Advisory Committee. The local emergency status gives the city access to additional resources and special powers under the Emergency Management Act, including personnel, from other orders of government if required.