Judge Sides With Shelter Board

The Community Shelter Board moves forward with opening its winter overflow center after a Franklin County Judge denied an injunction requested by Creative Child Care.
The Community Shelter Board moves forward with opening its winter overflow center after a Franklin County Judge denied an injunction requested by Creative Child Care.

A Franklin County judge ruled in favor of the Community Shelter Board Monday to move forward with plans to open a homeless shelter next to a daycare on the West Side. While it was a technical “win” for the Shelter Board, WOSU reports homeless advocates desire accord with the neighborhood.

Community Shelter Board Executive Director Michelle Heritage is pleased Common Pleas Judge John Bessey denied an injunction that would have temporarily prevented the shelter board from opening its winter overflow center next to a daycare. Now Heritage said she hopes all sides can reach a common ground.

“We’ve had many other locations where neighbors were initially concerned and even negative and against the work that we’re doing and have come to find that we can be good neighbors and we can work together,” Heritage said. “And what’s really important is we continue to listen to the neighborhood, that we address their concerns very, very quickly, and make sure that we are always working in partnership together.”

Creative Child Care sought the injunction while it moved forward with a lawsuit. The daycare’s director Lori Russell has claimed the homeless shelter will hurt her business. But since Bessey’s ruling, which Russell called “unfortunate,” the daycare has not decided if it will proceed with a legal fight.

“We’re just really not sure where we’re going to go from here,” Russell said. “We all want what’s best. So at some point I would hope that we can all just kind of come together and kind of make that determination of what is best and kind of go for that goal.”

The Shelter Board expects to undergo final code inspections sometime this week and be able to open the facility soon.

Creative Child Care said so far no parents have decided to seek other daycare options.

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