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January 27, 2003
Temporary warming and referral centre extended
  
Community and Neighbourhood Services - The temporary warming and referral
centre at Metro Hall that remained open last weekend to provide refuge for
homeless and vulnerable people will remain open evenings and overnight from 8
p.m. to 8 a.m. until the morning of Wednesday, January 29.

The centre provides relief from the cold, hot beverages and a point of contact
for people to gain access to shelter services. The warming and referral centre
is being provided in addition to existing Extreme Cold Weather Alert services.

Since its opening on Friday, January 17, the centre has logged more than 1,000
visits by homeless people, provided more than 145 referrals to shelters, and
arranged for transportation to the shelters. In addition, outreach services
have been enhanced.

"The centre has been effective in providing an extra point of access for
homeless people to reach shelters and other services during this period of
extreme cold," said Phil Brown, the City of Toronto's General Manager for
Shelter, Housing and Support. "We are prepared to maintain this heightened
level of service as long as this cold snap continues to ensure people have the
opportunity to come indoors."


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