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County/City Councillor Proposing a 24/7 Homeless Shelter in Woodstock

County/City councillor Deb Tait is putting forward a motion to Oxford County council, looking to explore the costs to build a 24/7 homeless shelter in Woodstock.

WOODSTOCK - A notice of motion will be filed on Wednesday, asking Oxford County to look at building a 24/7 homeless shelter in Woodstock. 

This is just a notice of motion, so it will not be debated at council until the following council meeting. Woodstock City and County councillor Deb Tait is the person putting forward the motion. It will ask the County to explore the costs around a 24/7 shelter that would also include spaces for addiction and mental health supports. 

Tait is also the councillor who put forth the motion to remove the benches at Museum Square and hire 24/7 security. Heart FM will be following this story closely and provide more information, once it goes before council in two weeks. 

You can read the motion in it's entiretly below: 

WHEREAS the increased rate of homelessness in Oxford County and the City of Woodstock is creating health and safety concerns for those who are experiencing homelessness, addictions and mental health issues;

AND WHEREAS these concerns are disproportionately impacting the City of Woodstock’s downtown;

AND WHEREAS adequate levels of social services, shelter services, and transitional housing equivalent to the increased rate of need are required;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Oxford County Council prioritize securing property for the establishment and operation of a 24-hour, 7 day a week shelter with sufficient space for the various agencies providing services to people experiencing homelessness, addictions and mental health issues;

And further that County Staff be directed to report back on the cost, funding and the length of time needed to begin operations;

And further that County staff be directed to report back on the ability to increase Peer Street Outreach services for downtown Woodstock for a minimum of 6 days per week in order to provide downtown businesses and patrons with an alternative response service to Woodstock Police for incidents not requiring police intervention.

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