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DHSS Press Release



Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498
Email: jill.fredel@state.de.us

Date: February 12, 2015
DHSS-2-2015





WITH SEVERAL MORNINGS OF SUBZERO COLD ON THE WAY, CODE PURPLE LOCATIONS ARE OPENING ACROSS DELAWARE


NEW CASTLE (Feb. 12, 2015) - With some of the coldest air of the winter arriving today and expected to last through next Thursday, volunteer-organized and volunteer-run Code Purple locations are opening across the state to keep people who don't have a home warm and safe.

Code Purple sites in all three counties typically are located at houses of worship or community centers. When sub-freezing temperatures or storms make it difficult for anyone to be outside for extended periods, the sites provide safe and warm short-term housing and hot meals to individuals and families who are homeless. The National Weather Service said record-low temperatures for February are possible over the next several days, with wind gusts potentially exceeding 45 mph and power outages possible. Snow is likely Saturday and wintry precipitation is possible again on Tuesday or Wednesday, the weather service said.

"The temperatures and wind chills expected in Delaware are potentially dangerous to anyone who might be outside for an extended period," Gov. Jack Markell said. "That's why I am grateful to all of the Code Purple locations in our state that can provide a safe place for people to sleep. During the next few days, I urge Delawareans who see people outside who don't appear to have a place to go, to call 9-1-1 so police can help get them to a safe location."

Since Code Purple sites use volunteers to manage operations, the activation and implementation vary by county and site. To be connected to Code Purple resources, call Delaware 2-1-1, or search for "Code Purple" on the Delaware 2-1-1 mobile app or on its website at delaware211.org

Locations include:

New Castle County: The lead agency for Code Purple in New Castle County is Friendship House, which operates two Code Purple winter sanctuary programs - one in Wilmington and the other in Newark at the Newark Empowerment Center. The Wilmington program is operated in collaboration with the Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army has called a Code Purple in Wilmington for today and Friday, but may extend the declaration later. The schedule:

Newark: Code Purple is in effect in Newark through Sunday, operating from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. in church space provided by eight different Newark faith communities on a rotating basis. Space in most places is limited to one or at most two rooms and can accommodate no more than 25 guests who are homeless. People in need are encouraged to pre-register from 1-4 p.m. daily at the Newark Empowerment Center, 69 E. Main St., Newark.

Kent County: Code Purple is in effect through Saturday. Morning leave time is 7 a.m. for each day listed. Call 1-800-733-6816 for any further updates this week. The schedule and locations:

Thursday, Feb. 12
Mt Carmel Church, 117 N. West St., Dover (men only): Opens 5 p.m.
Wyoming United Methodist Church, 216 Wyoming Mill Road, Dover (men only): Opens 6 p.m.
Shepherd's Place, 1362 S Governor's Ave., Dover (women and children): Opens 5 p.m.
Milford Community Center, 105 NE Front St., Milford (women and children): Opens 5 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 13
Mt Carmel Church, 117 N. West St., Dover (men only): Opens 5 p.m.
Wyoming United Methodist Church, 216 Wyoming Mill Road, Dover (men only): Opens 6 p.m.
Christ Church, 523 South State St., Dover (men only): Opens 5 p.m.
Shepherd's Place, 1362 S Governor's Ave., Dover (women and children): Opens 5 p.m.
Milford Community Center, 105 NE Front St., Milford (women and children): Opens 5 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 14
Mt Carmel Church, 117 N. West St., Dover (men only): Opens 5 p.m. (overflow to Dover Interfaith Mission for Housing, 684 Forest St., Dover)
Shepherd's Place, 1362 S Governor's Ave., Dover (women and children): Opens 5 p.m.
Milford Community Center, 105 NE Front St., Milford (women and children): Opens 5 p.m.

Sussex County: While there is not a defined lead agency that officially activates Code Purple, there are several local champions and Code Purple sites that lead efforts to support people who are homeless in Sussex County. These include:

Eastern Sussex: Faith Methodist United Methodist Church supports the operation of Immanuel Emergency Shelter, 37439 Oyster House Road, Rehoboth Beach, from Monday through Friday throughout the winter.

Western Sussex: Code Purple has been declared beginning today through next Wednesday, Feb. 18. Call Nikki at 302-519-0024. Both locations will have slightly extended hours on Saturdays and Sundays. The sites are:

Stein Highway Church of God (for men), 425 E. Stein Highway, Seaford. Hours are 7 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. The church operates a day-care center from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Gateway Fellowship (for women and children), 8110 Cannon Road, Bridgeville. Hours are 8:30 p.m. to 7:45 a.m. The women are transported to Gateway after eating dinner at Stein Highway with the men. The women are brought back into Seaford at the ACE Center at 8 a.m. each day.

Many of the Code Purple sites often need more volunteers, and more donations of money, sleeping supplies and food. The list of needed items include: blankets, cots, sleeping bags, towels and wash cloths, hand wipes and sanitizers, feminine products, toothbrushes and toothpaste, disinfectant spray, hats, scarves, gloves, boots, long underwear, coats, hand or feet warmers, bottled water, pre-cooked or frozen meals, instant hot drinks, ready-to-eat food with easy-opening lids, and garbage bags.

"The services provided by volunteers at the Code Purple locations are a godsend to people who are homeless," Department of Health and Social Services Secretary Rita Landgraf said. "By providing a warm and safe sanctuary, the Code Purple sites not only provide for people's basic needs, but they also give them hope. Until government and nonprofit partners can find transitional or permanent housing for all of the individuals and families who are homeless in our state, we are grateful for the critical service that the Code Purple locations are providing."



Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.





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