All I really wanted to know when I called the Good News Rescue Mission’s office a week-and-a-half ago was one simple thing: What, pray tell, is the Mission’s capacity?
That number was important to the story I was working on, “Is Redding Cruel and Unusual?” which concerns the Redding City Council’s revision of the city’s anti-homeless camping ordinance. The revisions, passed unanimously by the city council last week, were in response to a U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision last September declaring such ordinances unconstitutional if there is not enough “available shelter” in the area.
In order to leap this hurdle—the Eight Amendment provisions against laws that are “cruel and unusual”—the city claims the Good News Rescue Mission, the only major homeless shelter in Shasta County, never reaches full capacity.
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