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Against the cold wave, São Paulo erects tents and shelter in subway stations

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The arrival of a new cold front in São Paulo mobilizes the city and state governments in a task force to shelter homeless people and avoid deaths caused by low temperatures.

Actions such as the installation of tents to distribute soups and the use of a subway station to protect the homeless population are planned.

Today, the minimum temperature forecast for the São Paulo capital should be around 4°C, according to forecasts from the National Institute of Meteorology (Inmet). In less urbanized areas, especially in the south of the city, thermometers can reach 2°C. Friday is expected to have the coldest dawn in years.

In the morning, the thermometer is close to the zero mark.
In the morning, the thermometer is close to the zero mark. (Photo internet reproduction)

To provide assistance to the homeless population, the City of São Paulo is setting up tents at strategic points in the capital. The spaces will be used to distribute soups, blankets, warm clothes, and hygiene kits to homeless people.

The City Hall forecast was to provide about 5 thousand meals per night, besides distributing 3.2 tons of warm clothes and blankets obtained in a partnership with the Red Cross.

The tents will also have medical care provided by teams from the Street Clinic program, an initiative of the municipal health portfolio with the Nossa Senhora do Bom Prato social center. In addition, buses will be made available to transport the population to the City Hall’s overnight shelter centers.

The tents will operate in the Sé, Princesa Isabel (Luz), Barão de Tietê (Mooca), Salim Farah Maluf (Santo Amaro), and Miguel Dell’erba (Lapa) squares.

The City has also reinforced the services provided in shelters. According to the Social Assistance and Development Department, there will be 817 new places to shelter homeless people.

Located in several shelters throughout the city, they will be added to the 340 already available as a result of Operation Low Temperatures. According to the City Hall, since the beginning of the operation, on May, 15 thousand people have already been received.

In downtown, Pedro II Station will be used as an “emergency shelter” for 400 homeless people during the cold front. The measure was announced yesterday by Governor João Doria (PSDB). The station, of the Linha 3-Vermelha, is near Praça da Sé.

According to the state government, the shelter in the subway station will operate until July 31. Exclusively male, space will offer food, drinking water, mattresses, blankets, and 20 chemical toilets between 8 PM and 8 AM. “Security in the area and inside the station will be reinforced by the Secretary of Public Security and the Metropolitan Civil Guard,” the state government said.

A team from Padre Julio Lancelotti, who works with the vulnerable population, is expected to stay overnight with the shelters to help with intake. The government also announced that 83 thousand thermal blankets, 2,300 warm clothes items, and 23 thousand pairs of socks will be sent to the cities of São Paulo.

Away from the capital, other locations in the state may register temperatures close to zero on Friday. According to Inmet, the minimum forecast for winter tourist mecca Campos do Jordão tomorrow is -3ºC. Itapeva, in the southwest part of the state, and Mogi Mirim, in the east, should also register low temperatures.

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