Camden County Warming Centers See Higher DemandLast Edited:
“This is a Code Blue emergency,” said Carmen Rodriguez, a freeholder for Camden County. “I mean, this is [a] crisis ... we’ve never seen weather like this before.”
A Code Blue has been activated every day since Monday, December 25th, in Camden County.
As we enter our second week straight of frigid temperatures in South Jersey, official and unofficial "warming centers" continue to see more traffic and a higher demand.
Every municipality within Camden County is required to have at least one warming center.
“Different communities have different needs and for that reason it’s very important that we localize our efforts,” said Rodriguez.
For the homeless population in Camden, there are multiple warming centers for them to come to and escape from the cold, such as the library.
“We knew that what they really needed was a place to hide away from the elements and just to stay warm and stay safe,” said Rodriguez.
Every municipality within Camden County is required to have at least one warming center. The intent is to give their residents a place to go during these freezing temperatures, no matter the situation.
“It’s not just the chronic homeless that you see in the street," said Rodriguez, "but it’s also sometimes individuals who may find themselves in a home that does not have adequate heating. It could be just elderly individuals that we need to check up on.
“In the event that you do find yourself without proper heating, you know where to go,” she continued.
When the county health officer declares a Code Blue, the municipalities are required to activate their response plans, which includes their warming centers.
“There has to be a spot somewhere,” said Rodriguez. “What that spot is depends on that particular community, but they do have to have their plan."
To see a list of warming centers, visit the Camden County website at camdencounty.com/service/health-human-services/warming-centers.
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