Downtown Shelter Changing Policy To Provide Heat Relief For More Of City's Homeless

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A shelter opened its doors Thursday to the many homeless who need a break from rising temperatures.

Faith Mission, located at 315 E. Long St., serves hot meals to those who live on the streets. They also provided an opportunity for them to cool down, 10TV's Jessa Goddard reported.

Shelter workers said that there was a waiting list of more than 50 people to get in, leaving many to look for relief elsewhere.

In response to the surge in demand, the shelter changed its policy during the hot summer days.

"We typically don't open (the shelter) to people who don't stay with us," Faith Mission Executive Director Sue Villolo said. "However, for right now, we are opening it up so that anybody who needs refuge from the heat can get in."

Villolo said that the shelter will maintain its open-door policy as long as temperatures remain in the mid to upper 90s.

Surlaney Posey said that she has learned to survive after spending more than 12 years living on the streets of Columbus.

“Dress as cool as possible and stay out of the heat,” Posey said.

According to Posey, though, there are some things that cannot be prepared for on the streets.

“It makes my air passageways swell up to where I can’t breathe, and it will cause me to have an asthma attack,” Posey said.

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