Massachusetts Converts Old Prison Into Migrant Family Shelter In Response To Crisis

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Mariane Angela Contributor
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The Massachusetts officials revealed Saturday that they plan to convert the Bay State Correctional Center in Norfolk into an emergency shelter for families facing homelessness, WCVB-TV reported.

The former minimum-security prison, equipped with showers, bathrooms, a cafeteria and a gymnasium, will be converted to house around 140 families. Workers will modify the facility to create a domestic environment for the new residents, according to WCVB-TV. Scott Rice, the state’s emergency assistance director, confirmed the facility is prepared for the transition, highlighting its abundant amenities that will support various activities.

The shelter will offer English language lessons and job training programs to help residents achieve stable living conditions. Additionally, it will include designated play areas for children and classroom spaces for adult education, the outlet reported. The adaptation of the prison also addresses local concerns regarding the potential strain on Norfolk’s infrastructure and schools. Jim Lehan from the Norfolk Select Board recognized these concerns, pointing out that the decision is under state control. (RELATED: California Mayor Cites Surge In Border Encounters As Evidence Of Federal Enforcement Failure)

“This is a very sensitive issue. People are very concerned about its impact both in terms of our infrastructure and our schools. They have a right to be concerned,” Lehan said, according to WCVB-TV. “Our job is to minimize this impact because we don’t get a vote on this. If the state wants to do this, then the state will do this.”