CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) Beginning in May, the COMEA shelter instituted a residency policy.
Allowing those with Wyoming ties to take part in its long-term programs and mandating those from out of state move on after seven days.
“We want to make sure they don’t stay here for 60 days and eat up resources that could be used by someone right here in Cheyenne." Robin Bocanegra, the COMEA Shelter’s Executive Director says even if out-of-towners are given a chance to find a job and stay in town, most of them will pack up and leave.
“they kind of call themselves out. If they’re really not here for the right reasons, and you give them that limitation they rarely stick around even for that seven days.”
She says in the past the shelter was spending about a hundred dollars sending away for documents for people while giving them food and housing, those costs are about eighteen dollars a day and at the end of it all, the person wouldn’t return.
“it’s not that we don’t want to help everyone, but again, we’re trying to invest in our community.”
Bocanegra also says out-of-state residents aren’t eligible for state assistance which can help them get out of their situation.
“keeping people homeless isn’t what we want to do. We want everyone to have their own home and be independent.”
The COMEA shelter says after 6 months an out-of-state resident will be eligible for housing at the shelter again.