The Coalition in the News
Read through our recent coverage in the media.
Aug 8, 2023
DOT contractors imperiled unhoused pregnant resident at Charles Street Tent Encampment
"Yesterday, as outreach providers, volunteers, and staff were there to assist and evacuate residents of the Charles Street Tent Encampment, contractors from the Rhode Island Department of Transportation began using heavy machinery to clear out encampment 'debris'” notes a press release from the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness. "The operation of machinery delayed outreach efforts by outreach providers on-site and put residents, staff, and volunteers at risk, including a pregnant resident. This was despite several calls to the Department of Housing, local law enforcement, and even a call to 911 asking to stop the machinery from operating.
Aug 7, 2023
Homeless encampment on Charles Street in Providence to be cleared
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WJAR) — A homeless encampment on Charles Street in Providence will be cleared Monday.
It's been the center of controversy for months.
The nearly two dozen people living at the encampment will need to pack up and leave the area.
Aug 7, 2023
Providence clearing out homeless camp near highway
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — As homeless encampments continue to pop up around the state, more than three dozen people were ordered removed from a site in Providence on Monday.
The encampment was set up on a plot of private property on Charles Street. Officials said 40 to 50 people were living in the woods there, and police gave them a notice Friday to vacate within 48 hours.
Aug 7, 2023
R.I. advocates push for ‘sanctioned’ homeless encampments
PROVIDENCE — More than a dozen homeless individuals were packing up what was left of their belongings at a long-standing encampment Monday as two Providence police officers paced back and forth nearby. Residents of the encampment on Charles Street in Providence, which had existed behind the Da Vinci Center for several years and recently ballooned to more than 40 people, were told in eviction notices on Friday that the area would need to be completely cleared by the end of the day on Monday, and those living there would need to vacate the vicinity.
Jul 13, 2023
RI Coalition to End Homelessness Statement Condemning Raids on Encampments
Providence, RI – The Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness strongly condemns recent raids on encampments throughout the state, including the recent raid in Cranston requiring residents to leave by tomorrow morning at 7:00 AM.
“These raids not only violate the fundamental rights of individuals experiencing homelessness but also continue to perpetuate a cycle of marginalization and discrimination for Rhode Islanders who do not have a place to go,” said Caitlin Frumerie, executive director of the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness. “Rather than resorting to raids and forced evictions, we ask local officials to lead thoughtfully and compassionately. We must prioritize long-term strategies that address the root causes of homelessness and provide sustainable support to those in need. Until we have enough housing for everyone, encampment raids are unfair, inhumane, and cruel.
Jul 6, 2023
Homeless welcome Motel 6, few incidents reported
In the community room of the B Wing of the Motel 6, cartoons played in the background. A microwave and a thermos of hot water sat on the otherwise empty table. The wall is sparsely decorated with reminders of daily schedules and chores.
Melisa Lawrence has been living in the motel for a month through the program coordinated by OpenDoors RI, a nonprofit organization that operates multiple homeless shelters in the state. She sat at one of the small tables and ran her fingers through her auburn hair. She said she feels “safer here” and can “appreciate life more” than when she was living on the streets out of her car.
Jun 21, 2023
In Rhode Island, homelessness is in everyone’s backyard
The latest statewide Point-In-Time Count data uncovered 1,810 Rhode Islanders experiencing homelessness on the night of January 25, 2023. Additionally, 334 Rhode Islanders were unsheltered – a 370 percent increase from 2019. While these numbers are fluid, the trend over the past five years shows homelessness is rising, not decreasing, in the Ocean State. The data tells us that homelessness is a structural deficiency, and not a mysterious surge in people down on their luck.
Jun 7, 2023
Point In Time census results show R.I. housing crisis going from bad to worse
Rhode Island Current
PROVIDENCE — The number of unsheltered Rhode Islanders nearly quadrupled over the last four years, according to the results of a recent census released Tuesday at the State House.
The Point In Time count, run by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development with many local partners to measure homelessness, is conducted annually on a single night in January. Volunteers from the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness conducted this year’s count on Jan. 25.
Jun 7, 2023
The numbers are in and it’s official: Homelessness is rising – fast
The Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness (Coalition) released the 2023 Point in Time (PIT) count results at a Rhode Island State House Library press conference on Tuesday. Margaux Morisseau, Deputy Director of the Coalition, acted as emcee for the event. The Point in Time count is conducted annually in Rhode Island and provides the community with a snapshot of how many people may be experiencing homelessness on any given night.
Jun 6, 2023
Number of Rhode Islanders experiencing homelessness during annual winter count up 15 percent over last year
PROVIDENCE — The overwhelming majority of Rhode Islanders who held an unused rapid rehousing voucher were forced to continue staying in emergency homeless shelters — and outside — during the coldest months this winter. Due to the extreme lack of housing in Rhode Island, there weren’t any units available for them to move into.
Approximately 1,810 people were experiencing homelessness on the night of Jan. 25, according to new data from the state’s latest Point-in-Time count, a mandated annual count of all people experiencing homelessness in America. That’s an increase of 15 percent compared with 2022.
May 15, 2023
New emergency shelters open as Cranston Street Armory closes
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Cranston Street Armory shelter in Providence officially closed Monday after five months in operation. The Rhode Island Department of Housing announced new emergency shelter locations in various areas across the state to help those who are still experiencing homelessness.
May 5, 2023
Rhode Island launches first Youth Point in Time Count in five years
Brown Daily Herald
Rhode Island is currently conducting its first point-in-time count of youth and young adults experiencing homelessness since 2018, according to a press release from the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness and the Rhode Island Continuum of Care’s Youth Action Board.
Apr 28, 2023
Armory shelter extends operations to May 15 — here's what the state is saying now
In a change of course, the state announced on Friday that it will keep the Cranston Street Armory open as a shelter until May 15. Initially, the shelter was to close at the end of April, though recently it became clear the state had not fully developed a concrete plan for where the armory's residents would move next.
Apr 6, 2023
Barrington police flexible on timeline to move out homeless encampment in park
NBC 10 WJAR
BARRINGTON, R.I. (WJAR) — As a small homeless encampment in Barrington is close to being shut down, police say they'll be flexible with those living there and the timeline. Police told NBC 10 News three people have been living in tents in the woods of Veterans Memorial Park in the town for some time. The encampment is just south of the East Bay bike path and west of the park's baseball field and the neighboring Bayside YMCA.
Apr 4, 2023
Pawtucket overpasses cleared out, cleaned up; fencing to be installed
NBC 10 WJAR
PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WJAR) — Two overpasses along I-95 in Pawtucket were cleared out and cleaned up Monday after state and city leaders notified those living there to vacate. A notice to vacate order came down ten days ago, giving folks under the George and Garden Street overpasses until 9 a.m. Monday to leave or potentially face arrest or fines.
Mar 28, 2023
Armory warming center closes in a month, Providence City Council is reminded in grim report
PROVIDENECE – Winter's end will begin a new challenge for Rhode Island's unhoused population: Where to go when warming centers and seasonal beds disappear. As of the last two weeks, nearly 1,400 people in the state are without a home. They spend their days living in emergency shelters, transitional housing, in their cars or outside. But with fewer than 950 shelter beds, not counting warming sites, the state doesn't have enough to provide for them all. That's according to the bleak presentation offered by the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness to Providence City Council members Monday night.
Mar 16, 2023
Pawtucket warming center offers 24-hour support to people experiencing homelessness
Brown Daily Herald
OpenDoors R.I., an organization that works to support formerly incarcerated individuals and their families, began operating a 24-hour warming shelter at 1139 Main Street in Pawtucket late last month. The shelter offers occupants three meals a day, peer recovery support services, assistance with ID and license reinstatement and addiction treatment program entry, according to Dina Bruce, program director at OpenDoors R.I.
Mar 16, 2023
Report: Affordable housing shortage has worsened in RI for renters with extremely low incomes
“When there isn’t enough supply, people are left with nowhere to go and often end up living outdoors” said Caitlin Frumerie, executive director of the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness. “In the last two weeks, there were 379 Rhode Islanders who are unsheltered and scores more who are housing insecure. We must address this gap before the crisis worsens.”
Feb 22, 2023
Failure is not an option: An exclusive interview with housing secretary Stefan Pryor
Pryor steps into his new position with a clean slate and a low bar. But the literal life and death problems he’s been tasked to solved are enormous, and there are millions, – potentially billions – of dollars at play here.
Feb 6, 2023
‘We are always scrambling’: Weekend cold snap strains R.I. shelter system
“The state does not have a plan in place,” said Eileen Hayes, president and CEO of Amos House. “We need a new plan to end homelessness that includes temporary shelter, housing development, recovery beds, (and) family housing."
Feb 2, 2023
Homeless Rhode Islanders facing frigid cold and shortage of shelter beds
The Public's Radio
With temperatures expected to drop below zero this weekend, people who are homeless and living outside are at risk of frostbite and even death. Health Reporter Lynn Arditi talked with Eric Hirsch, a Providence College sociology professor who co-chairs the state’s Homeless Management Information System Steering Committee.
Jan 17, 2023
Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island caps 20 years of community grants with $740,000 for organizations addressing health inequities tied to housing
Blue Cross Blue Shield of RI
PROVIDENCE, RI (January 17, 2023) — Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) continues to address housing-related health inequities by awarding $740,000 in 2023 -- $335,000 in grants to five organizations that improve access to safe, stable, and affordable housing throughout Rhode Island and $405,000 for successful 2022 grantees. Funding for these organizations comes from BCBSRI’s cornerstone grant program, BlueAngel Community Health Grants (BACHG), which celebrated its 20th year in 2022.
Another $405,000 in BACHG funds was awarded to 2022 grant recipients who applied for an additional year of funding. Recipients included DARE (Direct Action for Rights and Equality), Housing Network of Rhode Island, NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley, ONE Neighborhood Builders, Pawtucket Central Falls Development, and Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness. Grant recipients can apply for transitional funding when successful performance outcomes have been achieved in the first year.
Jan 10, 2023
Woonsocket City officials called out on ‘cruel’ homeless encampment eviction
“What was done last week in our city was cruel and thoughtless. City officials that ordered the bulldozing showed a lack of empathy,” said Margaux Morisseau, Deputy Director of the Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness. “This is not how we treat our neighbors. Everyone deserves compassion.”
Jan 5, 2023
Warwick and Woonsocket homeless encampments destroyed: 'It creates a crisis,' advocates say
WOONSOCKET – Residents of a tent encampment along the Blackstone River awoke on Wednesday to warnings they had a half-hour to pack up their possessions and leave before the site would be cleared.
Dec 12, 2022
Can Governor McKee really evict homeless people sleeping on State House grounds?
On Dec. 7, people who have been sleeping outside in tents were given 48 hours to vacate the State House grounds or face fines or arrest. But some legal experts say the governor’s decision could be “criminalizing homelessness.”
Dec 9, 2022
Governor McKee disputes the reality of homelessness in RI; Here are the facts
The Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness estimates that there are 80+ encampments across the state and that around 385 people are sleeping unhoused, including families with children, every night. Rhode Island Governor Daniel McKee, who is actively seeking to evict an encampment on the State House plaza, disputed these numbers on Thursday...
Dec 8, 2022
Governor McKee grilled on State House encampment eviction
Rhode Island Governor Daniel McKee was in Pawtucket at noon today. Uprise RI and other news outlets were on hand to ask about his administration’s efforts to evict a homeless encampment from State House grounds.
Two biggest takeaways?
The Governor felt that the eviction is going “as well as an be expected” and the Governor disputes the number of homeless encampments and unhoused people in the state that is being given to him by providers...
Nov 30, 2022
BankRI grants over $95K to nonprofits
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — Bank Rhode Island has awarded $95,100 in charitable grants to 36 different nonprofit organizations across the state.
Some of the organizations chosen have a focus on hunger and food insecurity, youth education and emergency needs.
One organization that received a grant from the bank...
Nov 15, 2022
Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness delivers 2022 address
The Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness delivered its first ever State of Homelessness Address in the CIC Providence Building on Dyer Street Monday evening. The event presented and highlighted local and state-wide data on homelessness gathered by Coalition staff and partners.