Society diversity

City of Toronto opens new shelter with partner Homes First Society – City of Toronto

Press release

December 30, 2021

This week, the City of Toronto opened a new shelter at 101 Placer Crt. under the direction of the city council to increase the number of new permanent shelter beds. This new facility provides emergency shelter and essential support services to homeless people in Toronto.

The city’s newest shelter is operated in partnership with Homes First Society, an established service provider with over 35 years of experience. The city and Homes First Society are committed to ensuring the safety and security of shelter residents, staff and the community at large. The shelter has highly trained staff who are fully equipped to meet the diverse needs of residents, including support to develop a housing plan, navigation to health supports, crisis management, care taking account trauma, harm reduction and daily support.

While this mixed-use shelter can accommodate up to 87 beds, that number has been reduced to 51 beds to meet physical distancing requirements under the current shelter standards directive. In addition to the beds, there is a dedicated primary care, healthcare and community space for programming, events, community partnerships, workshops and volunteer engagement. In line with the shelter design and the city’s technical guidelines launched in January 2021, the site is pet-friendly, fully accessible, and includes a commercial kitchen, dining room, and laundry room.

The City continues to prioritize infection prevention and control (IPC) measures and access to vaccines to protect homeless people and keep emergency shelters operational during the pandemic. The City is working with health sector partners and the province to deploy the first, second and third doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to homeless people. In addition, investments have been made to support improved PCI measures and improve ventilation with higher quality HVAC filters and portable HEPA filters. Throughout the pandemic, the City has provided personal protective equipment (PPE), as well as financial support to shelter providers for the purchase of PPE, and is currently working to strengthen protection for all. frontline personnel through acquisition and fit testing of the N95. masks. If a person tests positive, the City continues to operate an isolation and recovery center to ensure those infected have a place to isolate and recover. Learn more about how the City is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in the shelter network.

Three new art murals inside the shelter will be painted by Amir Akbari. Akbari is a mural artist, arts educator, community advocate and entrepreneur in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) committed to creating meaningful creative opportunities for young people through introspection, expression and reflection. His works of art can be found in the Toronto area.

The City works with dedicated community partners such as Homes First Society to provide people-centered, results-oriented services that help people find and maintain stable housing and improve their overall well-being. This site is one of the accommodation spaces the City provides to approximately 7,250 people who use the emergency shelter system each night, the largest in Canada. The City ensures that vulnerable people can access emergency shelter when they need it and are assisted in finding permanent housing as quickly as possible. From January to November 2021, the City helped more than 3,100 homeless people to switch from the housing system to permanent housing.

More information on 101 Placer Crt., Including interior and exterior images of the site, can be found on the City’s Shelter Replacement and Expansion Projects page.


“Together, our city is working with our valued partners to fulfill our commitment to provide a safe and suitable refuge for Toronto’s most vulnerable residents. I am grateful to our municipal staff and Homes First Society who saw this refuge from inception to completion. I can’t wait to see how they will support homeless people and serve the community of North York.
– Mayor John Tory

“The new shelter increases our ability to provide access to temporary accommodation to vulnerable people when they need it, as we work to develop permanent and sustainable housing options for the long term. We are grateful to our service partner, Homes First Society, and our team of staff who have worked tirelessly to open this new site.
– Deputy Mayor Michael Thompson (Scarborough-Center), chair of the City’s economic and community development committee

“Shelters play an important role in our communities, providing valuable services and support to people who are homeless. Every part of the city has a role to play in meeting our urgent housing needs. Having this new shelter at 101 Placer Crt., Here at Don Valley North, is making a crucial difference in the lives of so many of our residents. I appreciate the leadership of Mayor Tory on this file.
– Councilor Shelley Carroll (Don Valley North)

“The new refuge at 101 Placer Crt. is an exciting development for all of us in the administration of shelter, support and housing. The City of Toronto has transformed the way it builds shelters and is actively responding to the needs of those who use our services. Working from a Housing First model, shelters are a critically important service that provide immediate accommodation to people in crisis as they move towards obtaining – and maintaining – a home. permanent housing. We are grateful to partners like Homes First Society who share our commitment to supporting Toronto residents experiencing homelessness.
– Gord Tanner, Acting Director General, Shelter Support and Housing Administration

“Homes First Society is thrilled to partner with the City of Toronto to provide these much-needed shelter beds and support services, especially in these difficult times. We look forward to becoming a positive and active member of the community.
– Patricia Mueller, Executive Director, Homes First Society

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