Downtown Windsor church encouraging community to help when nature calls

Reverend Robert Clifford says All Saints Church in downtown Windsor is trying to help those in need, but is concerned about people relieving themselves on the grounds of the church after hours.

“A very large building with a lot of nooks and crannies that are more comfortable than out in the open for people who find themselves in distress,” Rev. Clifford explained.

People that hang around the church knowing they are more than welcome to do so as long as they pick up after themselves. The church has been as welcoming as possible allowing people to use their washrooms.

“Bring out coffee. Bring out food when we’ve got something that seems appropriate and try to gently love them,” said Rev. Clifford who is calling on the community at large to help spread the love.

He feels there are a lot of public buildings and institutions in the core that could have washroom facilities available without requiring someone to be a customer.

“Those facilities need to be available and they exist but they’re not open after a certain hour,” he said.

According to the City Of Windsor website, park washrooms are open from 8 am until 10 pm every day.

The local branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association says it’s a bigger issue that a lot of communities are facing.

Hotel Dieu Grace Healthcare CEO Bill Marra agrees.

“From a systems perspective there’s a role for everyone to play,” he said.

“Whether it’s a schoolboard trustee, a member of council, a mayor, a provincial member of parliament. When there are opportunities for investments, when there are opportunities for decisions to be made, let them know this is a priority,” Marra said.

Marra and other stakeholders continue to work on solutions to help those with precarious housing situations and feel random acts of kindness from the public can go a long way.

“We care enough about our fellow citizens that we want to make sure there’s proper resources for them,” he said.

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