Warming bus to help homeless people in Hamilton this winter


Published November 17, 2023 at 5:51 pm

Human Beings of Hamilton homeless
In 2022, 50 people stayed outside in Hamilton during winter months, the highest on record to date. HUMAN BEINGS OF HAMILTON FACEBOOK PAGE

A warming bus to help homeless people will be travelling throughout the streets of Hamilton this winter.

With a maximum capacity of about 20 people for now, it will have a set route and stops, said James Berry, a City of Hamilton spokesperson.

The warming bus will also stop at designated locations near emergency shelters and drop-ins.

The City didn’t immediately provide inthehammer.com with specific details about the dates and times of operation, the route and stops.

“Individuals will have access to support staff on the bus, to assist with triaging to other services where possible,” Berry said. “Food and drinks will not be provided, however staff are working to ensure the bus makes stops where washroom facilities will be available. The bus will be dedicated to the warming bus route during hours of operation.”

The warming bus is part of the City’s homelessness winter response strategy, which was approved by council on Sept. 13. The strategy will cost the City $1,499,588, funded through the tax stabilization reserve.

The cost for the warming bus is estimated at $217,550.

The strategy covers the period from Dec. 1, 2023 to March 31, 2024.

The report presented to council in September pointed out that the number of people living in encampments has increased throughout the city. Last year, 50 people stayed outside during winter months, the highest on record to date. The City expects this number “to be much greater” this winter.

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