November 3, 2014
D.C. Councilman Jim Graham called the District’s winter shelter housing plans “extremely inadequate” last week. Hypothermia season has begun, and Graham reported that an estimated 840 families are expected to need housing, while only 409 family shelter spaces are available. D.C. laws state that shelter must be provided to anyone who needs it on nights when the temperature falls below 32 degrees. The number of families expected to need this shelter is up 16 percent from last year’s harsh winter. The overflow last year meant some families were sent to motels and recreation centers. Graham insists there is money to fix the problem, but needs information on where the necessary $10 million will come from, even as District officials claim they are well prepared.