Saskatoon downtown temporary shelter gets extension

The Saskatoon Tribal Council’s (STC) temporary downtown shelter has been granted an extension to operate at its current location until April 2023 – but Tribal Chief Mark Arcand hopes to move well before then.

City council voted on the bylaw change at Tuesday’s public meeting. The downtown temporary shelter on North First Avenue opened last year — initially with a six-month schedule.

“We could be out of here in six months,” Arcand told the board.

The STC plans to eventually move the welfare shelter to a permanent location on West 20th Street.

Arcand said the STC is working to coordinate necessary renovations to the site.

During the meeting, Arcand also said he felt the shelter was being unfairly scrutinized against The Lighthouse and The Salvation Army.

“It seems like in this whole process we’re trying to help people feel really targeted. I feel really unhappy about some of the discussions,” Arcand said.

“I prefer to sit down and talk to people and have an honest discussion about how we can do things together to make it better for everyone – and I think we’ve led by example.”

The request to extend the temporary shelter was unanimously supported by council.

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