Massachusetts Officials Announce New Partnership As Shelters Reach Capacity

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BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — State officials announced a partnership between the Healey administration and the United Way of Massachusetts on Tuesday after weeks of warning that the emergency shelter system is on the brink of hitting its cap.

With more migrants arriving in Massachusetts, shelter programs are dangerously close to capacity. State Emergency Assistance Director Scott Rice said the state could hit the cap in next two days during a press conference at the State House on Tuesday.

"We do not have enough shelter space. Service providers, were funding to continue to safely expand beyond 7,500 families," Rice said.

He said United Way's $5 million grant program will go toward funding community organizations, faith-based groups, and volunteer organizations to create short-term overnight shelters for people in need.

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"As the state puts these new supports in place we continue to ask the federal government to act to address the federal issues to include the need for large scale overflow sites for families," Rice said.

The prospective sites will include community centers, schools, and places of worship.

Rice also said in the last few weeks nearly 300 people in the shelter system have enrolled in Massachusetts hiring programs and that many have already been connected with employers.

The administration also announced it will be activating 75 more National Guard members to help provide services at shelters across the state.

WBZ's Nichole Davis (@NicholeDWBZ) has more:

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