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DCF Announces Seasonal Policy for Emergency Shelter Program

November 6, 2023

Waterbury, VT – To help ensure Vermonters who are experiencing homelessness and don’t have adequate financial resources can seek temporary housing in hotels and motels during harsh winter weather, the Department for Children and Families (DCF) is announcing the seasonal policy for Emergency Shelter.

As outlined in the 2023-24 Adverse Weather Conditions Policy: 

  • Between December 15, 2023 - March 15, 2024: 

Expanded eligibility will be in place regardless of the forecasted weather.

  • From November 15 - December 15, 2023, and March 15 - April 15, 2024: 

Expanded eligibility will be in place when the following conditions are met or anticipated — for at least three hours between the hours of 6 PM and 6 AM based on the town in which the district office is located.

    • Temperatures or wind chill are less than 20 degrees (F); or 
    • Temperatures are less than 32 degrees (F) with a higher than 50% projected chance of precipitation.

Assisting households with exiting homelessness into permanent housing is only possible with the diligent work of community partners, service providers, and housing organizations. Housing individuals in hotels is not an ideal setting for people experiencing homelessness; the Agency for Commerce and Community Development and DCF continue to work to help transition people who are in the program into stable, long-term housing, which is better for the health and safety of Vermonters and requires collaboration across state government and with community organizations.

To learn more: 

Call 1-800-775-0506.

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Visit your local ESD District Office: