The proposed Cold Weather Shelter would be located in the basement of the United Church. There would be 10 beds, and the shelter would be open to homeless people age 19 and over. (Jocelyn Doll/Revelstoke Review)

LETTER: Do we have to wait until someone freezes to death?

From a Revelstoke resident in support of the proposed cold weather shelter

To Mayor and Council Revelstoke City Council,

This letter is written to support the proposed winter emergency shelter in Revelstoke.

READ MORE: Temporary Cold Weather Shelter in the works for Revelstoke

Thanksgiving weekend we had a lot of company so for one night I slept in my van. The temperature was 6 degrees; warmer than my refrigerator, but not at all comfortable without my good sleeping bag, and a down jacket with a hood. It made me realize that anyone having to “sleep rough” would be extremely uncomfortable and in danger of hypothermia.

The Canada Safety Council tells me that cold air cools down the body – but it does not have to be frigid; hypothermia can happen at under 10 degrees Celsius, so it’s a threat even with above-average winter temperatures.

READ MORE: Revelstoke City Council hears concerns about proposed cold weather shelter

Do we have to wait until someone freezes to death before we are moved to provide basic shelter at night? Revelstoke has a facility (the United Church) willing to provide beds and shelter. We have an organization willing to manage the shelter (Revelstoke Women’s Shelter Society). We have a willing funder (BC Housing).

I live a four minute walk from the church, so it will be in my neighbourhood. Yes, I was consulted, in my own home, on the plan for the shelter. I live a four minute walk from restaurants, bars, some that close late at night. I am confident that with the concerned management of the Women’s Shelter Society that after-hour “noise” might actually be reduced.

READ MORE: Public hearing scheduled for amendments that would allow Temporary Use Permits

This project will create seasonal jobs and positive volunteer opportunities. This project does not address the lack of affordable housing in Revelstoke. But it may save a life.


Maria-Lynn Johnson

Revelstoke resident



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