Bend Mayor Gena Goodman-Campbell is calling on the community to help provide shelter to Central Oregon’s unhoused community as winter temperatures plunge below freezing.
Thanks to changes made to the Shelter Code by Bend City Council in July, the City of Bend no longer requires a winter emergency declaration to allow organizations or individuals to open a temporary shelter.
“As winter approaches and freezing temperatures become the norm, hundreds of people in Bend do not have a warm, dry place to rest and take care of their basic needs,” said Mayor Gena Goodman-Campbell. “This is humanitarian crisis, and we need more organizations and businesses in the Bend community to step up and use the tools the City is providing to help shelter our fellow humans and provide them the opportunity to find permanent housing.”
According to a press release by The City of Bend, temporary shelters can be anything from cots in a gym, multi-room facilities like hotels, RV parking and more and can operate for up to 180 days at a time.
The City also created a Safe Parking program that enables property owners or lessees to allow limited overnight parking for people experiencing homelessness. Safe Parking programs are allowed on properties owned or leased by businesses, non-profits, or religious or public entities.