BUTTE - Finding a home for Butte’s homeless shelter has not been easy. And with winter in full force, the Butte Rescue Mission says a shelter is needed.
“There are people out in the street, there’s people sleeping in the street, sleeping in the post office, sleeping in cars,” said Rescue Mission Director Rocky Lyons.
The mission has been searching without luck since the former shelter on East Second Street was closed due to code violations. Mission officials now have a potential location for its portable housing units in this location at the end of East Platinum Street just east of Arizona Street.
“The advantage of this spot is that its out-of-the-way, a little bit isolated. It’s also very close to all of the services that the homeless access. It’s really close to the bus route, it’s closest to Silver Bow Homes which a lot of those folks use our service for community bread room and meals,” Lyons said.
But securing this location is far from certain.
“We are in a buy-sell agreement with the owners of the property. One of the contingencies is passing the zoning board,” Lyons said.
The zoning board rejected a request by the rescue mission to open up a shelter down on the Flat last summer, but this time mission officials are hopeful the zoning board will give them a more favorable ruling.
“I think that the city is really seeing that we have huge need for a shelter,” Lyons said.
She adds that people don’t need to fear the homeless.
“The folks that we serve are no different than you and I and any point in time I think we need to realize that any of us could be homeless,” she said.
The sale will be discussed at the next zoning board meeting Nov. 16 at 5:30 p.m. in Council of Commissioners Chambers on the third floor of the Butte Courthouse.