WINNIPEG — A new Community Connections space has opened in Millennium Library to connect people with library services and social supports.
Besides helping the public navigate the library and its resources, the space will be a welcoming area for visitors who may face challenges using the larger library space on their own, or who require additional services not offered in the library.
Public library employees will staff the new area, along with community crisis workers and community agencies, who will offer information on a range of services, including shelter and housing, social assistance and related benefits, employment and ID assistance, mental health and addiction services, food security and other basic needs.
“The community hub space is a model for detasking security and policing and in their place creating a circle of care that can de-escalate, welcome, provide snacks and services— all things that research shows keep people safer without excluding them from public life,” said Joe Curnow, a spokesperson for Millennium for All.
Other public amenities in Community Connections include a kitchen, light snacks for people in need, a phone for public use, computer, Wi-Fi and device charging and a washroom with a sharps disposal container.
The federal government is providing $177,000 towards the creation of Community Connections, which has a total project cost of $236,000.
Hours of operation are available on the city’s website.