Cold Temps Force Some to Seek Shelter - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/24/03 - Tyler

Cold Temps Force Some to Seek Shelter

The cold weather is sending many East Texans to the shelters around our area.

The Smith County Salvation Army Shelter in Tyler had 10 people walk in Sunday night to get out of the cold. That's about an 8 percent increase from the weekend. 146 people are now staying at the shelter. The Salvation Army Public Relation's Director, Linda Edwards says they usually see an increase in residents this time of year. "It could be because they're not prepared at home with either blankets or heaters, or it could be that they are living in their car or that they do not have a place to live at all. And, it's just too cold on the streets."

The Highway 80 Rescue Mission in Longview also saw an increase last night. Three people checked in to excape the temperatures. The rescue mission is already close to capacity. The Mission's Director, Tony Chung says they are short of bed space and clothing. "Some of the men are asking us for jackets and we dont' have the larger sizes like X, XX, XXX. Especially XXX. I was just speaking to a gentleman and I said, 'Don't you have a coat?' He says, 'No.' I says 'Why not?' He says, 'It's hard to find XXX coats.'"

Both shelters say they expect to see even more people coming in Monday night.

Stephen Parr, reporting.

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