Meeting Information

Date: June 29, 2018
Time: 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Location: Toronto Archives, 255 Spadina Road

Key Discussion Points

System Overview

  • In 2017, more than 19,000 unique individuals accessed the shelter system.
  • On any given night, we estimate almost 9,000 people are homeless in Toronto.
  • In addition to the 156 people waiting to get into a family shelter, there were 240 people last night (May 30) at the Refugee Reception Centre at Humber College.

Respite Sites

  • 24-hour respite sites are designed to broaden the services available to those experiencing homelessness. They provide 24-hour essential supports in an environment that prioritizes ease of access and admission to the facility. Having these lower barriers makes them more accessible, especially to those who are vulnerable.
  • Based on a review of services from last year, Council approved a planned increase in the number of winter respite sites from three to five and an investment of $6.1 million.
  • This more than doubled the number of overnight spaces available compared to last year. Similar to our experience with shelter beds, as we opened space, it immediately filled.
  • Concerned about capacity, at its December meeting, City Council directed staff to add additional spaces as soon as practically possible and authorized the spending of $10.6 million for this purpose.
  • Since then, we have added three additional 24-hour respite sites for a total of eight sites. We also added additional temporary 24-hour respite sites in January – Regent Park Community Centre, Moss Park Armoury, and a warming centre at Metro Hall.
  • As of June 21, we had occupancy of 425 and capacity of 545 spaces (78 per cent occupancy) at eight 24-hour respite sites. The highest number of individuals to access 24-hour respite sites on any given night in 2017/18 was 586; there were 635 spaces available that night (88.5 per cent occupancy).
  • These sites continued to operate past April 15 to respond to ongoing demand. With two existing sites unable to continue operation, the City opened two new temporary 24-hour respite sites in May to ensure the ongoing availability of meals, service referrals and places to rest for those experiencing homelessness in Toronto.

SSHA 2018-2019 Winter Plan


  • Ensure that all who seek a place to stay have somewhere to go, and
  • Ensure that 24-hour respite sites provide services in accessible, clean, well-maintained facilities with amenities to meet clients’ needs.

Temporary Structures


  • To be confirmed – we are not able to disclose addresses at this time.
  • However, we are hoping to locate two downtown, one in the east end, and one in the west end. Willing to accept a temporary fix, but need to keep working on permanent fix to ensure customer service excellence for clients.
  • Layout is customizable. Each will have capacity for 100 clients.
  • The design permits the City to exceed its current Shelter Standards
    • One shower for every 14 clients (rather than for every 20 clients),
    • One toilet for every seven clients (rather than for every 15), and
    • Two gender-neutral/accessible washrooms (rather than one).
    • Clients will have access to on-site laundry.
    • Structures will be climate-controlled.
    • Structures will be equipped to have Wi-Fi, though it will be up to the Purchase of Service Provider (POS) to manage this contract with an internet service provider.

Respite Standards

  • May/June: Identify core components for standards with respite clients
  • July: Establish key concepts to inform development of respite services framework
  • July/August: Review and revise draft standards
  • August/September: Validate/revise standards with respite clients
  • September/October: Public consultations

Schedule and Next Steps in the RFP

  • Addendum: Wednesday, July 4, 2018
  • Submissions deadline: Thursday, July 12, 2018
  • Final decision: Thursday, August 2, 2018
  • Contact person for RFP:

Emily Kovacs, 416-738-2784,

  • Drop off completed applications:

Metro Hall, 55 John Street, 6th floor

  • Contact:

Laila Parpia, 416-392-7198,, or

Allison Wilson, 416-392-4477,