March 10. 2023
Families will begin arriving for medium and long-term stays at the Best Western on Monday, March 13th. Most of the school-aged children who will be staying at the Best Western will be transported to their home school districts outside of Concord for the duration of their stay. A minority of the students will be enrolled at Concord schools. The school district is coordinating with the on-site service provider to ensure that every students’ educational needs are met as quickly as possible.
Some of the rooms at the Best Western will be used for transitional stays of a maximum of 5 days. School-aged children in this group will not be enrolled in Concord schools or transported to their home districts.
February 25, 2023
The Emergency Family Shelter FAQs are updated to reflect information gathered from a meeting with representatives from DHCD on February 23, 2023. In addition to the DHCD, in attendance were town and school officials, and Reps. Cataldo and Barrett.
Also of note, the Select Board received a letter from the Concord Diversity Equity and Inclusion Commission, expressing care and support for the initiative to provide emergency shelter in Concord for unhoused families, in keeping with the mission of the Commission to create a more inclusive, welcoming community. Read the letter in its entirety here.
February 8, 2023
To provide the community with more information and to answer commonly asked questions regarding the DHCD Emergency Family Shelter, an FAQ is available on the Town Manager's page. As more information becomes available the FAQ will be updated.
A statement from the Office of Representative Simon Cataldo on the family shelter is available here.
February 2, 2023
Last week the Town of Concord was notified that the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) intends to establish an emergency family shelter at the Best Western in Concord, effective March 1, 2023. DHCD intends to lease all 105 rooms from the Best Western on an annual basis, with the first lease term being March 1 – June 30, 2023.
On Tuesday, Town Staff met with representatives from DHCD to discuss this shelter in Concord. DHCD explained that they are in charge of all state-run family shelters, that State-wide, there are only 3,600 shelter units in place, and that there is a critical shortage of shelter beds, particularly in our area. Currently there are 25 families from Concord and the surrounding area housed at an emergency shelter in Devens.
DHCD shelters meet two needs:
- providing temporary housing for: 3 to 5 days while more permanent housing is located; and for 2 – 4 months when more permanent housing isn’t readily available; and
- Providing temporary housing for pregnant women and infants.
Every DHCD shelter has an on-site service provider. In this case, the on-site service provider is MOC (Making Opportunities Count) https://www.mocinc.org/ The on-site service provider will have a 24/7 presence and provides clients with case managers and coordinating direct care.
Representatives from the following Town departments participated in this meeting to evaluate impact on town services: Human Services; Library; DPLM (Building, Health & Planning); Police; Fire; RHSO; and TMO. Dr. Hunter also participated in the meeting.
Governor Healey has made affordable housing her first legislative priority. She filed H.47 with the legislature which seeks additional funds for emergency shelters across the state. For those interested, more can be read about this here: https://www.wgbh.org/news/politics/2023/01/30/healey-emergency-aid-depleted-family-shelters-at-capacity, or her signing statement.
Town staff will remain in touch with the appropriate staffers at DHCD for the foreseeable future and will be providing periodic updates as more information becomes available.