To Mayor and Council Revelstoke City Council,
This letter is written to support the proposed winter emergency shelter in 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.
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.
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.