City-enforced rule could keep homeless on the street

A city-enforced rule may force more people out into the cold this holiday season.As the temperatures continue to drop, more homeless people are forced to

BROOKLYN - A city-enforced rule may force more people out into the cold this holiday season.

As the temperatures continue to drop, more homeless people are forced to seek shelter. However, the city recently began enforcing a rule that requires faith-based shelters to open a minimum of five days a week, or not at all. This means shelters that were only open two days a week and cannot afford to offer services on a five-day schedule will no longer operate as homeless shelters.

As a result of the rule enforcement, homeless advocates say hundreds of people won?t have a place to sleep. However, the city Department of Homeless Services says there is plenty of space at other shelters to accept all those who have been sleeping in churches.

At least 22 churches have stopped providing shelter to homeless New Yorkers as a result of the city order, including Our Lady of Refuge Catholic Church.

AP wires contributed to this story.

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