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February 23, 2007
Extreme cold weather alert in effect
The City of Toronto has issued an extreme cold weather alert, effective immediately, to help get homeless people in from the cold. The alert is in effect until further notice.

An extreme cold weather alert is issued when extremely cold weather is forecast. This type of severe cold weather is hazardous to homeless people who are sleeping outside.

Street Helpline operates 24 hours a day to help homeless people and front-line workers know where to find shelter and other services. Street Helpline can be called toll-free at 1-866-392-3777 from any payphone. Members of the public can phone this number if they see a homeless person sleeping outside.

An alert is in effect when Environment Canada:
• predicts a temperature of -15 degrees Celsius or lower, without wind chill
• issues a wind chill warning for outdoor activity for people in the Toronto area, and/or
• predicts extreme weather conditions, such as a blizzard or ice storm.

Under the alert, the following extra services are available to help homeless people:
• eighty additional emergency sleeping spaces in Toronto shelters
• enhanced street outreach services, including emergency transportation to shelters, provided by Agincourt Community Services Association Inc., Christie Ossington Neighbourhood Centre and Salvation Army - Gateway
• emergency TTC tickets are available at a number of drop-in centres to help homeless people reach shelters.

For more information, visit

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of more than 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years Toronto has won more than 50 awards for quality and innovation in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:
Bryon Clarke, Emergency Planning, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, 416-392-9199, 416-714-2750 (after hours)
Robyn Connelly, Partnership Development, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, 416-397-4192, 416-553-8428 (after hours)



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