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Pima County Supervisor: Sheltering migrants and local homeless requires different protocols

Posted at 8:01 PM, Jan 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-10 01:07:02-05

TUCSON, Ariz. — Following our coverage of the empty rooms and unused donations at the Casas Alitas immigrant shelter in Tucson, comments poured in from viewers about what resources are available for veterans and the homeless in Tucson.

Since August of 2019, Catholic Community Services has used the old juvenile detention center, owned by Pima County, to house migrants while they wait for asylum hearings.

Pima County Supervisor Richard Elias said the local homeless population can't stay at the facility, run by Casa Alitas, for logistical reasons.

Elias said there are different protocols for taking care of migrants and homeless people and safety could be an issue.

"Having to separate and segregate those populations and provide security and also, have a whole system to feed them and make sure that they have beds and plumbing that's working appropriately, can't be done."

Elias added that if there is ever no longer a need to house migrants seeking asylum at these facilities they could become a community emergency shelter.

While homelessness remains an issue in the city for veterans and non-veterans alike, directors at local organizations like the 'Gospel Rescue Mission' and 'Esperanza en Escalante' say there are resources available for those who seek them.

Officials at these non-profits say you can help by donating in various ways to these groups.

  • Click here to donate to the Gospel Rescue Mission.
  • Click here to donate to The Salvation Army's Hospitality House.
  • Click here to donate to Catholic Community Services.