Cincinnati-area groups are working together to test a federal pilot program aimed at reducing the number of homeless lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or questioning (LGBTQ) youth.
Meredith Hicks with Lighthouse Youth Services explains why the region is one of just two in the country chosen to try out new strategies targeting this vulnerable population.
Homeless children, teens and young adults are a rising concern for police and social workers in Hamilton County.
Lighthouse Youth Services CEO Bob Mecum says homeless kids used to mainly be unhappy runaways.
"Today we're seeing kids who are, for the most part, long-term victims of poverty, long-term victims of neglect, and physical and sexual abuse," says Mecum.
Addiction is another major problem. Mecum says heroin use today is unprecedented and often passed down to children by their parents.
Two companies that would be neighbors of the relocated Drop Inn Center in Queensgate are expressing concerns about the plan.
A city council committee heard from proponents of the plan two weeks ago, and Tuesday it heard from representatives of two companies that say they need more information.
Richard Posey is with K4, an architecture, design and construction firm with a facility in Queensgate. He said one issue is security and safety for employees.
Construction on the new Drop Inn Center could begin later this summer and the facility could be open in August 2015. It will be moving from its current location in Over-the-Rhine to Queensgate.
A Cincinnati Council committee received an update on the project Tuesday from Executive Director Arlene Nolan. She said several sites were considered before one was selected.