Roy's Homeless Shelter Closing?
The only Western Coachella Valley emergency homeless shelter is in danger of shutting down. Roy's Desert Resource Center will most likely have to close for part of the year, due to lack of funding. Video by kmir6.comvideo
PALM SPRINGS - The only Western Coachella Valley emergency homeless shelter is in danger of shutting down. Roy's Desert Resource Center will most likelty have to close for part of the year, due to lack of funding.
The people who fill the one hundred beds at roys shelter face a decrease in services. The shelter opened three years ago and is funded by Riverside County, but cities are now cutting back on their annual donations.
"We have some cities that have been contributing every year. It's a $103,000 commitment, and then we have some cities that contribute a partial-- and then we have some cities that dont contrubute at all," says Shelter Director Aurora Wilson.
If desert cities do not make up the difference, Roy's is likely to close for much of the year, dispersing the homeless back into parks. The shelter provides meals, 100 beds, and case managers to the homeless, and last year alone Roy's helped 780 people.
"If Roys closes, we are the only major shelter in the Cochella Valley. The only major shelter," says Wilson.
Roy's was started by Wilson's late husband, Roy Wilson. The former Riverside County Supervisor said the Western Cochella Valley needed its own shelter.
La Quinta Mayor Pro Tem Terry Henderson says her city never signed up to pay for Roy's, choosing instead to spend money on east valley homeless services. Same goes for coachella and desert hot springs.
Wilson says a special meeting will be held on March 21 to consider worst case scenarios.
County Supervisor John Benoit says its a very difficult situation, but Riverside County just can't afford to fund Roy's Shelter the same way it once did. But people in the area say the county needs to find a way to keep this shelter going.
"They'll be all over Palm Springs (homeless people) all in front of the stores and downtown- it'll probably start looking like downtown L.A.," says Concerned Resident Carol Scott.
Vicky Tiffany says she knows first hand how important homeless shelters are.
"My son was homeless in Alabama for a very long time, and if it hadn't been for the homeless shelter, he would've been in very big trouble," says Tiffany.