Transition House moves out of School

When the Covid-19 crisis hit, Transition House, Northumberland’s shelter for the homeless (but located in Cobourg), wanted a place where there could be social distancing for staff and clients and their “house” could not do that. Simultaneously, the High School (Cobourg Collegiate Institute – CCI) closed for classes. So with the cooperation of the School Board and with help from MPP David Piccini, the school became an interim “Transition House”.  For details see link below. But with schools re-opening in September, this arrangement was not sustainable.  With the house empty, changes were able to be made to the House to make it suitable in a Covid-19 world, albeit with a limited capacity.  Transition House Executive Director Anne Newman has now announced that they will be moving back to the Chapel Street location on Friday, 17 July.

Transition House
Transition House

Changes to House

“Based on direction from Public Health, measures have been implemented to enhance the safety of operations during the pandemic, including updates to washroom facilities, furniture and other infrastructure, protocols for health screening for those entering the facility, enhanced sanitation practices, physical distancing requirements within the facility, and visitors will not be permitted.”

Because of the need for physical distancing, a maximum of 10 clients will be accommodated at any given time.  If demand is more than this, Anne says that “a hotel partnership has been secured to address this additional need, during this time”.

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Merry Mary
18 July 2020 9:04 am

It is very distressing to read the derogatory comments below about the disadvantaged people, in need of assistance for a variety of reasons, disadvantages that could apply to anyone at any time.

MiriamM
17 July 2020 9:03 pm

Pete Fisher has pictures on his news site including interior of Transition House on Chapel Street. The sleeping area has bunk beds with what appears to be a total of 10 beds in one room. Who thought that was good idea? Where is the science on this idea? Even if fewer people will use the room during a pandemic protocol, multiple unrelated adults sleeping in such close quarters can not be good for mental health. I back packed around Australia and New Zealand for weeks and stayed mostly in low-budget student hostels … could never get a good night’s sleep when there more than two other strangers in the same room (maybe because I grew up sharing a room with two siblings and that was my limit!) and I avoided the dorm type hostels where many people were in the same room. Is this what shelters look like these days? Or, only short-term emergency shelters?

Rob
Reply to  MiriamM
20 July 2020 2:25 pm

Actually Miriam some shelters are far worse – between sleeping outside in the elements (heat, humidity, rain, insects and pests, etc..) and sleeping in a dorm style shelter the choice is likely an easy one when ones choices are so limited. This isn’t a backpacking trip through the outback…

MiriamM
Reply to  Rob
20 July 2020 3:09 pm

I would say it may explain why some people would prefer a tent. If a shelter is funded and operated, who sets the rules and decides how the money is spent? Who designs the shelter? If one’s focus is on basic survival, I doubt volunteering on an advisory committee is a priority. And, back-packing is a lesson in what is important to the basics of quality of life and appreciating difference in others. Too easy to forget, though, on return home.

Michael
17 July 2020 7:48 am

I have not once in my life seen so many dumb people do not speak if you dont know what your talking about.. educate yourselfs reading all your comments as just made me stupid. So thanks for that

sandpiper
Reply to  Michael
17 July 2020 10:21 am

I guess you don’t live near by or volunteer there
do you

Informed
Reply to  Michael
19 July 2020 7:41 pm

You dont have to be a rocket scientist to know that housing disadvantaged people in one room with no ability to social distance during a pandemic was a bone head move. Yah sure the cots had a 6 ft distance between them . Sure they did.

Rob
Reply to  Informed
20 July 2020 8:44 am

In many ways I guess they were like a family living together… they likely had additional controls and measures in place (temp checks, regular screening, etc…). They obviously did an adequate job.

Informed
Reply to  Rob
20 July 2020 1:27 pm

I think they did what they could with the information in place at that time. I also think they got lucky this community was largely free of Covid. I hope the controls and measures that you touched on are in place at Transition House.What is the plan if there is an outbreak at Transition House?Is there a plan? Where will people isolate?

Last edited 3 months ago by Informed
Rob
Reply to  Informed
20 July 2020 1:46 pm

You’re right – our entire county was essentially covid free. They would not be permitted to reopen and have residents if they did not have a plan. The article above begins to reference some of the measures that have been put into place to address covid related concerns…I suspect we are well beyond the hope as a strategy mentality.

CiW
16 July 2020 5:54 pm

Speak, off the record, with any administor from CCI and they will tell you, if they are honest, how successful or unsuccessful the use of the school as a temporary Transition House was. Theft and vandalism were and and still are issues.

Merry Mary
Reply to  CiW
18 July 2020 10:06 am

“An off the record comment” is now placed on an “on the record setting.”

cornbread
16 July 2020 12:07 pm

Perhaps a better location for a Transition House would be out in the country where the residents would not cause any or less trouble as is happening in town

CiW
Reply to  cornbread
16 July 2020 5:48 pm

Or perhaps Brookside. There is a lot of empty space there.

cornbread
Reply to  CiW
17 July 2020 5:52 am

I’m thinking like a possible unused space at Warkworth prison…Get the issue out of Cobourg

Michael
Reply to  CiW
17 July 2020 7:44 am

These people aren’t criminals idiots yeah let’s put them in jail wow some people are dumb. I’m glad you guys dont run the country

cornbread
Reply to  Michael
18 July 2020 1:28 pm

I did not say “put them in the prison” I said unused space.

Merry Mary
Reply to  cornbread
19 July 2020 1:25 pm

“unused space at Warkworth prison.”

Kyle
Reply to  CiW
18 July 2020 2:22 pm

Because Brookside being a “Young Offender” institution nothing like that could ever happen.

sandpiper
16 July 2020 8:47 am

I don’t understand why the won’t convert the old arena to the Transition house
Lots of room Wash rms , Showers , Change rms and a Canteen with Kitchen
plus losts of area for a play ground according to the last town report there was 15 yrs life left in the building . they ca build an indoor Motel or tinny home complex under a roof so fast it would not be funny

Ken
Reply to  sandpiper
16 July 2020 11:07 am

My thoughts are the same!! I wondered why they didn’t start using the old Memorial Arena sooner!? If I am not mistaken, the only reason the arena was closed down was that the refrigeration system was broken and it was going to be too much cost to repair?
As you have said, Sandpiper, the building isn’t in too bad shape and there are all the facilities, that one would want, in order to help the ‘homeless’!
What’s the thinking at the ‘County’? Renting rooms at a local hotel… I do not think that’s the answer! Maybe the County has a ‘money tree’ growing behind their offices?

Petra Hartwig
Reply to  Ken
16 July 2020 12:32 pm

Having direct contact with a homeless woman who has been relocated temporarily to a local motel, I can say that it is not the ideal situation. Perhaps for a month or two, but not as long as she has been there (8+months). There are no cooking facilities, storage for food, and an exorbitant rental fee of $1200 a month!!! This leaves nothing left over for food, not to mention it is far out of the town proper for her to go for groceries (she has mobility concerns). I could go on, but reading the suggestion above regarding the Memorial Arena does seem plausible.

Bryan
Reply to  Petra Hartwig
16 July 2020 12:59 pm

At $1200 per month, the County would have been better off, and so would the women, to have paid rent for an apartment

sandpiper
Reply to  Ken
17 July 2020 10:25 am

Just think of the Damage deposits and repairs
we are paying for if people don’t believe go ask the New Owners of Cedar View motel
or Scotties Motel

cornbread
16 July 2020 8:13 am

Who is the hotel partnership with??? Why the secrets???

Canuck Patriot
Reply to  cornbread
16 July 2020 8:31 am

The fact that the County has had to resort to renting hotel rooms is the real story. It would appear the County not only has failed in planning properly and having a firm, workable plan in place, it simply doesn’t have one.

This is the tip of the iceberg and suggests that the whole social services division of the County come under immediate review. When Cobourg Council feels it needs to get involved in Affordable Housing CIPs because the County has dropped the ball, the correct solution should be to fix it at the County level.

Last edited 3 months ago by Canuck Patriot