picture of 2035 Kennedy Rd.
2035 Kennedy Rd. Temporary Shelter – Delta Hotel

Location: 2035 Kennedy Rd.
Shelter residents: Singles aged 16+ and adult couples of all genders
Capacity: Up to 301 people
Opened: May 2020
Service operator: Eva’s Initiatives, Kennedy House, and Homes First Society

The City has been using the hotel at 2035 Kennedy Road for accommodation for people experiencing homelessness since early 2019. Before COVID-19, the site was used primarily to shelter refugee families.

As part of the City’s response to COVID-19, the City of Toronto opened more than 25 new temporary sites to create physical distancing in the shelter system and provide space for people to move indoors from encampments, providing around 2,600 spaces in these temporary shelters and hotel programs. The City worked quickly to save lives, protect the most vulnerable, and minimize the spread of COVID-19 in shelters and the community. In May 2020, the 2035 Kennedy Road location was converted to a temporary shelter. This service is operated by three community partners, Eva’s Initiatives, Kennedy House and Homes First Society, and is funded by the City of Toronto.

Learn more about the temporary sites opened in response to COVID-19 to serve people experiencing homelessness.

 

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The City has contracted site management and services at 2035 Kennedy Road to Eva’s Initiatives, Kennedy House and Homes First Society.

Individuals come to shelter sites with a range of needs, both material and physical. 2035 Kennedy Road is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and provides wrap-around support for shelter residents.

Shelter residents are given meals and can access a number of supports. While supports differ depending service provider, they include:

  • Individual case management
  • Access to health supports through a partnership with Inner City Health Associates
  • Access to mental health supports
  • Harm reduction, including the SHOPP program (details below)
  • Housing supports
  • Training programs (e.g. skills-based employment training, financial literacy)
  • Recreational programming (e.g. movie nights, yoga, virtual group events)
  • Supports for youth to re-establish connections with family

The Shelter Hotel Overdose Prevention Project (SHOPP) is active at 2035 Kennedy Road. SHOPP is a community designed response the opioid crisis where people with lived experience of homelessness and who have experience with drug use provide support to resident residents. People at risk of overdose can use their drugs in front of, and with the support of, a SHOPP peer worker who is trained in overdose prevention and response measures like administering Naloxone, oxygen, CPR, and who can call emergency services if needed.

Learn more about the City’s Integrated Prevention & Harm Reduction Initiative in the shelter system and about overdoses in homelessness service settings.

Safety and security are a priority for the City. The City works to support the residents of the temporary shelter at 2035 Kennedy Road to be good neighbours. Homes First Society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives work closely with Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, Toronto Police Services, the Community Shelter and Corporate Security at the City of Toronto to develop community safety measures for the location.

Two Community Safety Teams are at 2035 Kennedy Road. One Community Safety Team patrols the Village Green Square area 24 hours a day. Wearing yellow vests, they engage with shelter residents off property and address safety concerns, such as discarded needles. The Community Safety Team can be reached through One Community Solutions by telephone (24/7) at 647-688-8475 or 647-688-8927 and by email at securedbyus@gmail.com. Community members are encouraged to reach out to them if there is a safety issue in their community they feel needs to be addressed related to the temporary shelter. The other Community Safety Team are inside 2035 Kennedy Road.

Staff from Homes First Society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives are on-site 24/7. The site has contracted security guards to ensure the safety and security of the Delta Hotel property. Security guards patrol the entire property, including the interior, exterior and the connected parking structure. There are hotel security cameras on the main floor, including the reception area and in the elevators. Externally, cameras are placed around entrance points.

Homes First Society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives bring management practices that have proven successful at their other locations. All service providers have protocols in place to respond to emergency situations, and staff are trained in de-escalation, conflict resolution and crisis prevention, intervention and management.

Representatives from the operators, Homes First Society, Kennedy House and Eva’s Initiatives, have conducted community outreach and engagement, including the following:

  • Meeting with neighbouring condo buildings and businesses to connect, introduce themselves and provide contact details if anyone had any questions or concerns.
  • Liaising with Community Safety Teams on their engagement with shelter residents off property and supporting the teams to address safety concerns
  • Participation in Safety Walks with Toronto Police Services 42 Division and Metrogate community members
  • Participated in several online information sessions and safety talks in collaboration with the Community Safety Team and Toronto Police Services 42 Division
  • Engaged as panelist in town hall meetings with Ward 22 and larger Agincourt and Metrogate Community
  • Ongoing and regular meetings with the Metrogate community, Resident Association representatives, Toronto Police Services 42 Division and Community Safety Teams
  • Resident clean-up crew completes a community clean-up multiple times per week
  • Responding timely to inquiries and community concerns via email, phone, zoom, etc.

Because of physical distancing restrictions, engagement events are online and over the phone rather than in person.

If community members want to get engaged, share feedback, and/or ask questions, they can contact operators directly at:

  • Homes First Society: Direct line to Shelter Staff – 647-455-0334
    • Ryan Evershed, Manager of Community Engagement & Client Programming.
    • Email: Evershed@homesfirst.on.ca; Telephone: 647-455-1552
  • Kennedy House: Direct line to Shelter Staff: 416-428-9039
  • Eva’s Initiative: Monique Thompson, Residential Supervisor

General inquiries about services for those experiencing homelessness can be directed to ssha.homeless@toronto.ca