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The Malnea A. Cass Recreational Complex in Roxbury, Massachusetts, which has been serving as a temporary migrant shelter, is set to transition back to public use in time for the summer. The facility, owned by the state, has been closed to the public for several months while it has been used as an overflow location to house homeless families, including migrants. It had cots set up to accommodate over 300 migrants, but it will shut down on May 31, and officials will prepare to reopen it to the public a few weeks later on June 22. Operations for the Cass Center are transferring back to the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

All families have been moved out of the Cass Center, either to more stable housing options outside the shelter system or to a different state safety-net site. The state’s safety net sites are designed for families eligible for Emergency Assistance shelter but are on the waiting list for shelter. Emergency Assistance is for homeless families with children or pregnant women, and about half of the families in the program are newly arrived immigrants, while the other half are long-time Massachusetts families. The spokesperson for the governor’s office stated that these families will be moved to more stable housing before the shelter closes.

Before the complex reopens for public use, it will undergo renovations, including upgraded flooring and equipment, new tree plantings, repairs to the roof, and the installation of new solar panels. This will ensure that the facility is ready for the public to use and enjoy once it transitions back from being a migrant shelter. The preparation for the reopening is being done to make sure that the complex is in good condition and up to standard for community members who will use it for recreational activities.

The spokesperson for Democratic Gov. Maura Healey’s office stated that the Cass Center is being transferred back to the Department of Conservation and Recreation in time for the pool to open on June 22. This will allow community members to access and enjoy the sports courts, pool, and other amenities that the complex has to offer. The transition back to public use will mark the end of the facility’s temporary use as a migrant shelter and the return to its original purpose as a recreational center for residents of Roxbury, Massachusetts.

The state’s safety net sites are aimed at providing support for families in need of Emergency Assistance shelter while they wait for permanent housing solutions. Families who are considered eligible for Emergency Assistance but are on the waiting list can access these safety net sites, which offer temporary accommodation until more permanent arrangements can be made. The spokesperson added that these sites are utilized by both newly arrived immigrant families and long-time Massachusetts families who are experiencing homelessness and in need of support.

The decision to transition the Cass Recreational Complex back to public use follows its temporary use as a migrant shelter to accommodate homeless families, including migrants. With the closure of the shelter on May 31, officials are preparing for the reopening of the facility to the public in June. Renovations and upgrades will be done to ensure that the complex is in good condition for community members to use and enjoy during the summer season. The return to public use will mark the completion of the temporary migrant shelter and allow the facility to once again serve as a recreational center for residents of Roxbury, Massachusetts.

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