Pensacola parents concerned about proposed homeless shelter near high school

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PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — Some parents went to the Escambia County school board meeting Tuesday night to voice their concerns about a homeless shelter that is coming soon near Pensacola High School.

“We are afraid for the safety of our children,” Joan McDonald said.

They don’t want to see the empty building at North Palafox Street and Maxwell Street to become a shelter for the homeless.

“I don’t know how many young girls will have to watch men use the bathroom, how many students will be sold drugs, and eventually somebody will be raped and somebody will be killed,” Lisa Gibson said.

It will be about a quarter of a mile from the school and many of the neighbors say they are not against the new center but only this location.

“I hope that you can do something to either get the location moved or if it has to be there, that you will somehow have open communications with the facility so that problems can be avoided,” Nicole Endacott said.

The city recently approved the funding to transform the building into a shelter that will house a few dozen people. City officials say it will have 24-hour security on-site and a vetting process for those who stay there.

This shelter is one part of the city’s plan to reduce homelessness and clear out the homeless encampment under I-110. The mayor says the homeless people under the interstate need to be out within the next month.

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