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Addressing homelessness in Kittson County

Homelessness does happen, even in Kittson County. Social Services Director Kathy Johnson presented information and a proposal on this issue to the Kittson County Board of Commissioners at the regular meeting on April 3.

Social Services had a recent case of a person needing a place to stay; they called Northwest Community Action (NWCA) headquartered in Badger, Minn., to find housing.

Sometimes those affected by homelessness are still minors, known as “couch hoppers,” who will stay with a friend for a few days before moving on to another friends’ house.

“Even though they are housed, they are still considered homeless,” Johnson explained. “It gets a little harder for a sixteen year old; how can we find shelter for them when they aren’t an adult yet? They can’t even sign a contract.”

If immediate shelter is needed, social services may work with the Salvation Army about a hotel room.

Johnson proposed the county join membership in NWCA’s new committee on homelessness. The purpose is to bring stakeholders together to end homelessness for “unaccompanied youth” 24 years old and younger. NWCA covers a region of 11 counties.

For the rest of the story, see this week’s North Star News!

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