ROSEBURG, Ore. — The ongoing discussion about homelessness in Roseburg included a trip to Medford.
Last week, several members of the Roseburg City Council traveled south to Medford for a tour of a program called “Rogue Retreat.”
It has a number of programs and services that cater to the homeless.
"I think you have good leadership there in Roseburg, trying to address the issues," said Chad McComas, Rogue Retreat's executive director. "It's a hard challenge for all cities to have the homeless population growing and growing, with little resources for them to have."
Rogue Retreat made a presentation at one of Roseburg City Council's work sessions addressing the homeless issue.
They invited the council to visit Medford to see some of their programs in person.
"It's just immediately obvious why it works and why it's successful," said Roseburg Mayor Larry Rich. "They have staff there 24/7, they have expectations, and they let you know that when you come in here, you're going to be focused on getting the help, whatever your issues are."
The Roseburg councilors were shown three of the facilities.
"We were able to show them our 34 tiny houses, which we call Hope Village. Then we showed them our 54-bed shelter," McComas said, "and the last thing we showed them is our brand new campground that we opened up last month with our local city police and our local county sheriff."
The level of homelessness a person is in determines which facility they stay in.
They gradually move up through the facilities until they’re released back into the community.
Mayor Rich was impressed by what they saw.
"I’d like to do all three," he said. "It's pretty obvious there are different stages for people when they're homeless."
The council is in the final stages of their work sessions regarding homelessness.
There will be one more session next month to discuss action.