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The original item was published from 10/23/2023 2:46:43 PM to 1/2/2024 9:53:11 AM.

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Acton Town News

Posted on: October 23, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Planning for an Emergency Shelter in Acton

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On August 8, 2023, Governor Maura Healey declared that a state of emergency exists in Massachusetts due to rapidly rising numbers of migrant families arriving in Massachusetts in need of shelter and services and a severe lack of shelter availability in the state. According to the Governor’s office as of October 16, there are nearly 7,000 families with children and pregnant women in emergency shelter, including newly arrived migrant families and longtime Massachusetts residents. About half of the individuals in emergency shelter are children.

Earlier this month, the Town of Acton was made aware that the Minutemen Inn on Hosmer Street has been designated as an emergency shelter with a 33-room capacity. It is our understanding that part of the Minuteman Inn will be designated as a shelter and that the remaining rooms will continue to operate as a motel. On Tuesday, October 17, 2023, Senator Jaime Eldridge, Representative Dan Sena, Representative Simon Cataldo, Town Manager John Mangiaratti, Superintendent Peter Light and relevant Town Department staff as well as Acton-Boxborough School District staff discussed the shelter with Making Opportunities Count, Inc (MOC). MOC is a non-profit organization that works with the State to run several shelters including one in Concord, and the one that is planned in Acton.  

Town officials were given adequate notice and we are looking forward to welcoming the families when they arrive. Town departments are coordinating closely with MOC and extensive planning is already underway by the AB school district. Site visits and further meetings are planned as part of the preparation for the shelter.

The anticipated arrival date for the families is in mid-November. MOC will provide shelter services on site with 24/7 staffing that includes case managers and security.

It is anticipated that residents may wish to donate items or help in other ways. MOC has requested that we wait until we understand the specific needs of the shelter before donations are accepted. We will be working with the new AB Resource Center to coordinate donations and volunteers.

If there are any questions about this please contact the Town Manager's office at manager@actonma.gov or 978-929-6611.

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