Clark County to give Springfield $275K for housing for homeless

Elaina Bradley, executive director of Interfaith Hospitality Network, looks around one of the empty family rooms at Interfaith Monday. The homeless shelter has been closed due to COVID-19 and has been placing homeless people in area hotels. BILL LACKEY/STAFF
Elaina Bradley, executive director of Interfaith Hospitality Network, looks around one of the empty family rooms at Interfaith Monday. The homeless shelter has been closed due to COVID-19 and has been placing homeless people in area hotels. BILL LACKEY/STAFF

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

The Board of Clark County Commissioners will give the City of Springfield $275,000 to help the city “provide temporary non-congregate living arrangements for homeless Clark County residents,” according to the resolution approved by the commission.

The funding, which was approved by the commission Wednesday, will come from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was passed by Congress in March.

Local homeless numbers have skyrocketed in Clark County since March. The number of families seeking shelter has also dramatically increased throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

ExploreSprignfield leaders seek state help as homelessness continues to rise

The commission had previously discussed the homelessness issue in the county, but commissioners were unsure about what could be done to help.

City officials previously reported that they had seen an increase of 350% in the homeless rate in the county since March. For families, that number had increased by 750%.

In late November, Springfield leaders and local faith leaders called for more state assistance in getting immediate shelter for more than 200 people who are waiting on services.

In the meantime, those needing emergency shelter have mainly been housed in hotel and motel rooms in the area. However, those options have quickly become limited as more families and children and in need of housing as temperatures drop.

In Other News