The Community Women's Shelter no longer housing children. We raised the issue with the County, the media and the public and we saw a change in October 2016. The Women's Shelter is way overcrowded and there were many homeless families looking for help. The County came up with the solution of putting women with children inside the already overcrowded women's shelter. NEOCH felt that the County should declare an emergency and ask for help. The City Mission stepped forward to help and is now housing families in the gymnasium. They purchased cots and toys for the kids. This shows that with public private partnerships, we can solve problems. We thank City Mission for their help in this time of crisis.
Began negotiations on the Women's Shelter changes
Frontline Services has begun meeting with women on the priority issues to improve the shelter. We will post the priority items and provide regular progress for the shelter. So far, we are planning on a survey of the women and the creation of a resident council to rewrite the rules. There are many questions outstanding that need answered from the agency. This is only a small step but at least the two groups are talking.
After a loss at the district court our legal team scored a scored a victory in the Appeals Court and ruled against the Ohio Secretary of State for the way he purged voters. We posted the information on our voting blog from Demos about the suit here. The issue was that the Secretary of State notified voters that they may be removed from the voting rolls, but gave them vague or confusing instructions for what the voter should do to correct this situation. The lawyers spent weeks on negotiating this and eventually had to go back to court to get the federal court to order a resolution. It was a victory for common sense and voting rights.
In 2015, we kept hearing at meetings that the food at the two big shelters was subpar. The two shelters had contracted with the Lutheran Metro Ministry program called the Central Kitchen. We had Central Kitchen staff attend Homeless Congress meetings, but it was not getting better. So, we set up meetings at the Central Kitchen last year and things are getting better. They hired a new head chef this summer and have made the trainees go out and serve the food at the shelters on a regular basis. The residents admitted at both the Homeless Congress and at the Resident Council that things are improving at the Central Kitchen. We congratulate the staff over at Central Kitchen, and hope to see continued improvement.
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