February 2021 News Archive

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Memorandum of Understanding signed to work towards a permanent integrated emergency shelter in Red Deer

February 24, 2021 3:00 PM
(Red Deer, Alberta)

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Province of Alberta and The City of Red Deer has been finalized, bringing us one-step closer to having a permanent integrated shelter in Red Deer.

“Through the signing of the MOU, the Province and The City of Red Deer acknowledge our mutual objective is for vulnerable Red Deerians to have access to safe, accessible shelter through the provision of a quality purpose-built integrated emergency shelter,” said Mayor Tara Veer. “The Province and The City will continue to work together to collectively achieve public interest outcomes our community. As shelter infrastructure and operations are within Provincial decision-making jurisdiction, it is important to ensure The City is consulted on the project to ensure community impacts are considered.”

The purpose of a MOU is to establish a general high-level understanding related to the provision of this Provincially managed project to meet the current and future needs in Red Deer, recognizing that shelter comprises one component of the housing continuum.

The City and community have advocated for years to the Province for additional overnight shelter spaces in Red Deer, and for a permanent 24/7 emergency shelter that can provide year-round wrap-around integrated homeless services for homeless and vulnerable persons. On February 7, 2020, the Province committed to $7 million in its 2020 Capital Plan for a purpose-built integrated emergency shelter in Red Deer.

Over the past several years, Red Deer shelters have been at capacity, at times overflow beds were full, and daytime warming was full.

“The lack of a permanent integrated emergency shelter in Red Deer has become visibly evident in our city, manifesting itself in rough sleeper camps in our parks system and impacts in our downtown, with people seeking shelter in business vestibules because of a lack of sufficient storage, washrooms, and daytime supports,” said Mayor Veer. “The signing of this MOU allows The City and the Province to work together to achieve public interest outcomes, and put processes in place for City input and review for this Provincial project.”

Specifics about location, timing and operational details have not yet been finalized by the Provincial Government. The facility will provide shelter amenities and services such as, but not limited to, sober and intoxication emergency shelter beds and spaces, food preparation and services, showers, washrooms, laundry and storage facilities, and housing, counselling, health and detox supports. The Province of Alberta will act as the project manager, designing the service delivery model and coordinate the building of the shelter.

See FAQ Shelter MOU announcement (pdf) attached.

For more information, contact:

Corporate Communications
The City of Red Deer

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