CHICAGO — Outreach workers are fanning out and are connecting with people who are unhoused as the dangerous weather conditions approach.

Brandie Knazze, the Chicago DFSS commissioner said that over the next several days and nights multiple outreach teams will be on the street visiting encampments encouraging residents to take shelter and make sure they’re okay.

That was Commissioner Brandie Knazze yesterday talking about the city’s efforts… opening warming centers, working with non-profits and expanding emergency shelter hours. 

The Chicago Coalition for the Homeless estimates there may be 16,000 people in the city who are experiencing homelessness and living on the streets, based on census data. 

The executive director says access to housing is a year-round issue that has to be prioritized beyond extreme weather events 

“What are we doing proactively to yield funding in place that will produce more housing, provide social support.” Doug Sckenkelberg said.

Workers with the night ministry are out now providing warm clothes, medicine, transit cards and information about shelters to people in need.