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Calgary takes steps to protect vulnerable population as temperature drops

An outreach volunteer offers help to the homeless on a -20C night in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh An outreach volunteer offers help to the homeless on a -20C night in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
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City officials say there's a plan in place to help Calgary's homeless as colder weather is expected to settle in this week.

According to the forecast from Environment and Climate Change Canada, temperatures are expected to plunge below -20 C for the next three nights.

Daytime highs aren't expected to be much warmer, the agency reports.

As a result of the situation, the city, along with its community partners, will provide more shelter oppportunities for vulnerable Calgarians.

"We want to ensure that anyone who needs help can get it," said Mayor Jyoti Gondek in a statement.

"We've been working extensively with our partners at the Calgary Homeless Foundation, local shelters and community groups to offer services that will get individuals access facilities that have the capacity, teams and resources in place to best support them."

The supports include:

  • Free shuttle service between select LRT stations and the Drop-In Centre/Alpha House between 8:30 p.m. and 1 a.m. from Nov. 30 to Dec. 1 – additional LRT stations will be considered as required;
  • Additional warming spaces at five locations with hours ranging from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., depending on the location; and
  • The Salvation Army's mobile warming station will be provided at different LRT stations seven days a week based on an online schedule.

The city says with the added spots, there are now 335 available at 10 locations across Calgary.

Further details about warming spots and other supports can be found online.

Anyone who sees someone who needs help during the cold weather is encouraged to contact the Downtown Outreach Addictions Partnership team at 403-998-7388.

If someone is in serious distress, Calgarians should call 911.

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