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Citing the lack of a state budget, the inability of the city's DFSS program to increase its funding, increased costs of programming, and rising insurance and salary costs for its employees, North Side Housing & Supportive Services announced today that it will close its emergency overnight men's shelter at the Preston Bradley Center at the end of the year.
It will maintain all of its other services, including managing nearly 200 permanent-housing apartments for its clientele and a drop-in center in Ravenswood.
For nearly five years, North Side Housing has provided 72 beds at 941 West Lawrence for men needing immediate shelter. It took over the space after the REST shelter closed at the same location. At the end of June 2016, it had previously announced it would close, but the passage of a state stop-gap budget the same week gained it an additional six months of operating expenses.
In its letter, referenced above, it says that NSH&SS will stop taking in new clients as of October 1st and will "work diligently to ensure all residents are placed in alternative shelters throughout Chicago before the December closure."
In addition to the bad news about the shelter closing, there may be a ripple effect for the Preston Bradley Center. The letter says, "The Department of Family & Support Services will not be awarding this contract to another agency." That means the Preston Bradley Center will be losing an important tenant. We don't know the financial condition of the PBC, but we know that losing the funding that came with reliable rent payments is sure to leave a gap.
We hope that this works out for everyone, but have to admit that it looks bleak at the moment.
- The letter reproduced above is online here.
- The press release referenced in the letter is online here. It is entitled "The State Budget Crisis, Inadequate Funding, and Rising Cost Force Uptown Homeless Shelter to Close."