City of La Crosse unveils new plan to address homelessness and make Houska Park safe

On-site resources and security will be available through October

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) — The city of La Crosse is taking a huge, new step to offer additional resources to its homeless population.

The city, in partnership with the Coulee Collaborative to End Homelessness, put together a comprehensive plan to make Houska Park a safe space, according to Mayor Mitch Reynolds’ office.

“The various partners have been meeting on a weekly basis to discuss how our community can offer as much support as possible to individuals who are staying at Houska,” said Brian Sampson, the city’s homeless services coordinator. “Our plan is to provide one safe space for individuals experiencing homelessness.”

Between now and the end of October, the city and local nonprofits will offer on-site support services from 8 a.m.- 8 p.m.  Monday-Sunday. Occupant registration packets will be available to individuals who want to stay at the park.

A city-hired security team will do nightly park checks, and additional staff will clean and maintain park facilities.

The city also relocated the Houska dog park to Wittenberg Park at 2940 George St. and Hass Park at 3600 Easter Road. Both dog parks are now open.

Reynolds plans to release more information on Wednesday.

The city is accepting donations at the REACH Services and Resource Center at 212 11th St. S. Drop-off information and times can be found HERE.  To make the best use of supplies, the city asks that donations to be brought directly to the center on the designated day and time and not to the park.

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