City Council pleads with Mayor Woodward to reconsider stance on young adult shelter in Spokane

SPOKANE, Wash. — Spokane City Council members have joined the Washington State Department of Commerce in pleading with Mayor Nadine Woodward to reconsider her stance on the need for a young adult shelter in Spokane. 

The State Department of Commerce awarded the City a $2.7 million grant in August to establish a shelter specifically for young adults. The agreement states those shelter beds must be available by the end of the year. 

According to a proposed City Council resolution, the shelter on S. Cannon St was originally supposed to serve as a shelter for young adults, but was instead turned into an all-ages shelter to accommodate more people during the pandemic. 

“Directing young people to adult shelters is not an adequate solution,” said Commerce Director Lisa Brown. 

In a letter addressed to Mayor Woodward, Brown said she was “disappointed” to learn city leaders did not agree with the placement of such a shelter within city limits. The letter is backed by the Spokane City Council, which is supporting a request for an extension to funding from the Dept. of Commerce so the city will have time to find an adequate shelter space. 

“Young adults would benefit from being located near the educational, health and human service resources provided within the city,” the letter from Brown reads, in part.

Read the full letter below:

LB, Mayor Woodward, City of Spokane Shelter, 12-03-2020 by Emily Oliver on Scribd