Lee County works toward permanent housing for those experiencing homelessness

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A homeless camp in Lee County. Credit: WINK News.

Lee County has a new program designed to help families find a pathway to permanent housing. Lee County found more families are living out of their cars or in tents because they could not financially support themselves.

We met a family that is struggling for a solution, a mother and two boys living in a tent. The new program in Lee County is something that could possibly meet their needs.

The county has been finding and putting homeless people and families in hotel rooms for months now, but a mom we spoke to says she’s waited with her two boys for months.

All three still live in a tent.

The woman who asked that we not name her has been homeless for more than a year. She fears if she comes forward about her situation, she could lose her boys. She’s still on the waitlist to get help from Lee County.

Commissioners take it a step further Tuesday and will make a decision about whether to work with The Salvation Army and Centerstone to counsel and place families.

The end goal is permanent housing.

“I’m 100% in favor of this because we’re trying to find a long-term solution,” Ruane said. “Everyone said it was a Band-Aid. A hotel is a Band-Aid. We aren’t looking to have a Band-Aid. That’s not what we’re looking to do.”

In the meantime, the woman we spoke to anxiously awaits a place for her and her boys.

Commissioner Ruane told us this program has been amazing because they’ve helped nearly 100 cases in a short time span. He says he can’t say whether people are getting the long-term help they need just yet.

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