As Portland prepares for its next round
of crappy weather, some people are grumbling that Julia West House
didn't open when it was most needed for its homeless clientele — during yesterday's cold aftermath of Sunday's snow.
"Monday was the very day the homeless needed a warm cup of coffee and a place to hang out of the cold, the most,” said a shelter volunteer who asked to remain anonymous. “There's an obvious irony in this.”
Julia West's staff say the decision was a product of staff not being able to make it in. Operations director Cathy Harris says the decision to close the shelter at 522 SW 13th Ave. came at 9 pm on Sunday. At that point, a big sign went on the shelter's building to tell folks about the closure.
Julia West House, which Harris says provides services for 50-80 people, bills itself on its web site as offering “hospitality and a place…for those who have nowhere else to go.” Under normal conditions, The Julia West House is open Monday-Saturday, 6:30am-3:30pm; minus Thursday when they close at 1:30 pm ... or apparently when it snows.