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City begins moving some of Jacksonville's homeless population into hotels

According to the city, there are no qualifications to get on the list for the Pathway to Home program; however, they are focusing on people living outside.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Starting Monday, people living outside in the cold in Downtown Jacksonville are loading on buses to head to hotels.

It's the start of the city's plan to move people from the homeless camp on Jefferson Street into hotels for 30 days while they work with case managers to find permanent housing. This is called the Pathway to Home program.

All day people have been waiting to hear their name called. Multiple times every hour, a group of people will form. That's when the city and homeless outreach organization workers are calling off names and giving suitcases to people to collect their things and get on a Jacksonville Transportation Authority bus to head to an extended-stay hotel.

According to the city, there are no qualifications to get on the list for the Pathway to Home program; however, they are focusing on people living outside, specifically in the camp on Jefferson Street.

City workers say they have been working with several nonprofit organizations to get people into hotels before this, but this is just the beginning of this specific program. Fifty-three people are going to the hotels first.

"I haven't signed up and for a moment there I thought all was lost and I just was like, 'why did I have hope?'" said Carletta Beaman. "And then they said they would work something out for the rest of us after they got the original signers."

If you or someone you know needs help immediately or want to sign up for the program, you can go to the Urban Rest Stop at the Sulzbacher Center at 611 East Adams Street. You can also contact Changing Homelessness at 904-354-1100.

RELATED: City announces plan to provide hotels for homeless population

RELATED: Jacksonville homeless service asking for support as pandemic cancels their largest fundraiser

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