Tyler agencies say homeless population searching for shelter in colder months

Tyler PD says there are about 260 homeless people that they estimate in Tyler who are looking for warmth this winter season
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Published: Jan. 3, 2022 at 7:04 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - As temperatures drop, the homeless population in East Texas will look for shelter, one way or another.

Resources in Tyler include Salvation Army, Hiway 80 Rescue Mission, and PATH.

Director of Gateway to Hope, Errin Dixon, said they offer access to a day care center with showers, laundry, and technology.

“From homelessness to self-sufficiency,” Dixon said. “I was once homeless myself, so God led me in this direction. If God can change the way that I was doing, then he can do it for someone else too.”

Hiway 80 also has transportation to shelters in Longview. Whatever the reason may be, Dixon said some people shelter in vacant buildings.

“People try to get in out of the cold, looking for a place to go and if they can find a spot like that, that’s what they are going to do until they could get with people like Hiway 80 to try and encourage them to move in a different direction.”

Johnny Green is with the Tyler Community Response Unit who has worked with the homeless population for 15 years.

“Working with the homeless, they’ve always been attracted to vacant buildings,” Green said. “If I see someone coming in to a vacant building, I’ll try to reach out to the property owner, but the property owner has to say ‘yes or no’ whether or not they can be in the building, and then we try to work with the property owner.”

If you know someone who might need help, you can click here for the Hiway 80 Rescue Mission.

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