Abandoned nursing homes could house the homeless

Thank you to Rev. Jeffrey Rock for bringing to the attention of the citizens of Red Deer the plight of our most vulnerable citizens, since the Barachah Place, the city’s only day shelter, has closed its doors. (Red Deer Advocate, Nov. 7, 2014.)

Thank you to Rev. Jeffrey Rock for bringing to the attention of the citizens of Red Deer the plight of our most vulnerable citizens, since the Barachah Place, the city’s only day shelter, has closed its doors. (Red Deer Advocate, Nov. 7, 2014.)

On the evening of Oct. 16, I took part in the Point of Time count of the homeless in Red Deer.

After completing our assigned area, my partner and I drove past the former Valley Park Manor (in Riverside Meadows). The building was lit up like a Christmas tree; it stands empty and it is my understanding the building has 24/7 security! Across the city in south Red Deer, the former Red Deer Nursing Home building is also closed and empty. Both buildings have been empty for several years!

As Rock so clearly identified, the vulnerable citizens of this city are at risk. The extreme weather conditions have arrived! Do we have the political will to make a difference?

Fellow citizens, contact your provincial and municipal representatives and urge them to establish suitable day shelters for our homeless.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” — Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Shirley Challoner

Red Deer

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