UCC Denison Homeless Shelter Will Operate Through April After City Grants Continuance


Rally for Metanoia/Denison UCC, 1/6/2020 - SAM ALLARD / SCENE
  • Sam Allard / Scene
  • Rally for Metanoia/Denison UCC, 1/6/2020

The overflow homeless shelter operated by UCC Denison and the Metanoia Project will operate through the winter and into April after the city issued a continuance this week.

After having already resolved some fire code violations (exit signs, fire extinguishers), the church will need to remedy the rest (fire alarms, sprinkler system) by spring. For now, it will continue the nightly fire watch with the help of volunteers who've come forward to physically inspect and tour the church at regular intervals each night so that it can house the needy.

“I think the fact that we were granted the continuance was based on several factors, not the least of which was the existence of the fire watch,” Pastor Nozomi Ikuta told Ideastream.

Community support has been widespread in the face of code-based attacks by the city of Cleveland at the behest of departing councilwoman Dona Brady, which included a cease use notice delivered on Christmas Eve, a yuletide anti-homeless insult that led to an overwhelming and passionate showing by supporters at the next Cleveland city council meeting.

Advocates have also clamored for the to establish a cold-weather plan.

"We renew our request that the City of Cleveland work to put in place an effective and compassionate long-term cold weather plan that honors the safety, dignity, and value of every child of God," the church said in a December statement. Discussions, councilman Matt Zone has said, began in early January on that front and continue.

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