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City's new homeless shelter hits capacity days after opening

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The demand for homeless shelters in Vancouver isn’t going away anytime soon. Just a few days after opening its doors, the city’s new temporary shelter hit capacity last night.

The Mount Pleasant location at Fraser and Broadway filled all of its 40 beds.

Bill Briscall with Rain City Housing says this shows the need to provide more beds for the homeless in town. “You know the city and the province are working toward that as fast as they can, but the count was up 12 per cent from last year, so there is definitely a need to provide more housing and more shelters.”

He says it’s hard to turn people away and they do what they can before sending them back into the cold. “People can come in and get warm. If it’s meal time, we’ll feed them as well, even though we don’t have any space for them to actually pull up a mat.”

Three more temporary shelters are set to open in Vancouver this winter.