PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - A new homeless shelter opened in Southeast Portland Thursday.
It’s called the Laurelwood Center, and Multnomah County intends to house more than a hundred guests there. It’s part of their “A Home for Everyone” effort and it’s run by Transition Projects, which focuses on getting Portland's homeless into housing.
“It’s a good neighborhood, its changed a lot over the years,” Patricia Pavlacky said. In her more than thirty years living near SE Foster Road and Holgate Boulevard, she’s seen things come and go.
And she said at first, she wasn’t too happy about the latest addition.
“I was worried that it was gonna draw a crowd that wouldn’t be good to raise children in, or ya know, cause I have a granddaughter that comes over to visit and I was worried about that,” she said.
But she says now she’s learned more about it and is optimistic, as are others in the area, like Derrick Francis, who works next door.
“I feel like we need more shelters,” he said. “The reality of homelessness in our society isn’t something that should be shunned or turned away.”
The county says it will house 120 women and couples with the priority being seniors, veterans and people with disabilities. The shelter will operate by reservation only with the goal of helping people regain stability and find a permanent home.
“We’ll see how it goes,” Pavlacky said. “If the crime rate goes up, because I watch that, or if other things start happening or if I start seeing other things that are of concern, believe me, I’m very vocal, they will hear from me.”
But for now, she says she hopes to see it do some good in her community.
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