JACKSON, Mich. (WLNS) — Efforts from the City of Jackson and local organizations have helped homeless people stay warm.
Tracie Jo Sutliff brought supplies and food to homeless tents across Jackson for weeks.
As of Thursday, those tents are empty.
Efforts by the city have allowed people in need to get out of the cold and stay here at the Travelodge hotel.
Sutliff is the leader of Second Chance for All.
“We needed this more than anything,” said Sutliff. “We literally have saved lives from getting people out and it was just in time too.”
Sutliff is working to pick up anyone she can and help them stay at the hotel.
With Sutliff’s help, people like Dan expressed his appreciation.
“It means a lot. It saved my life because I don’t know where it was going to go,” said Dan.
Inside the hotel, the group Residents in Action is lending a hand by supplying food and clothing.
Tashia Carter is the Executive Director of Residents in Action, and the organization’s intention is to identify who needs help.
“We are doing assessments to identify what their needs are, digging down into the root causes [and] connecting people to the resources,” said Carter.
Jackson recently approved a plan to get a lease to use the vacant T.A. Wilson Academy building for housing homeless residents, but leaders with Residents in Action say their focus is the present.
“We don’t know about transitioning into permanent housing, but we do know during this cold process that we are seeing right now that we do need to get people off the street and into somewhere warm,” said Residents in Action leader Salena Taylor.
Sutliff says as a team they are also ready to do whatever it takes to create long-term solutions in the city.
“We need to meet them where they are at to figure out why they are homeless. What can we do to get you off these streets for good? We don’t want homeless people in Jackson. it’s not right.”
The current agreement is for funds to pay for a stay at the hotel for a few more weeks.