Extreme Cold Weather Emergency Response Plan
In Saskatoon members of the Extreme Cold Emergency Response believe that ensuring all residents in Saskatoon have access to a safe location during extreme cold is the responsibility of all members. Working together we can provide a whole community approach to enhance options for those who are experiencing homelessness.
Operating under the Municipal Emergency Plan (MEP), the Saskatoon Emergency Management Organization (EMO) coordinates an Extreme Cold Weather Emergency Response Plan for Saskatoon. This plan enables multiagency collaboration to ensure everyone has access to a safe location when Saskatoon is experiencing extreme cold or other severe weather.
Cold weather in Saskatoon is a routine occurrence. This response is intended for use during extreme winter weather. There is still risk for those who are experiencing homelessness during the winter months. Member agencies work to provide options for those who are homeless through regular operations of outreach services, emergency shelters and access to emergency social services. Homelessness is a complex issue that requires multi-sector planning with a client-centered and trauma-informed approach. This extreme cold weather emergency response plan is one process in the overall community-wide approach required to deliver services, housing and programs.
The extreme cold weather response is activated when:
- air temperature or wind chill is expected to reach -30°C for two days;
- air temperature or wind chill is expected to reach -40°C for at least two hours; or,
- when 10cm of snow falls within 12 hours or less.
When the Extreme Cold Weather response is activated, members establish a coordinated approach to providing services and support for residents, including:
- emergency overnight shelters
- warm-up locations
- outreach services such as wellness checks and connecting individuals to available resources
- cold weather essentials such as toques, mitts, jackets, and blankets
Individuals and families can warm up at various locations across Saskatoon. Please download a copy of the warm-up location poster for full details.
Those seeking emergency shelter in Saskatoon can contact the regional Income Assistance Office either by phone or in person:
- Regional Income Assistance Office
160 2nd Ave South, Saskatoon
Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.
The Salvation Army provides Emergency After Hours Support when the Ministry is closed. Anyone can call the Salvation Army for after hours services:
- Salvation Army (After Hours Support)
Daily from 5:00 p.m.- 8:00 a.m. plus weekends and holidays.
Emergency shelter options explored will include any option of: staying with family and/or friends; a stay at one of the City’s emergency shelters; or, when no other resources are available, a hotel stay. Appropriate emergency shelter options are determined on a case-by-case basis.
Emergency shelter services are available 24/7 365 days per year. There is no change during a cold weather activation.
Members of the Extreme Cold Weather Strategy
- CHEP Good Food
- City of Saskatoon
- Community Legal Assistance Services for Saskatoon Inner City
- Community Support Officers Program
- Central Urban Métis Federation Inc. (CUMFI)
- EGADZ/Saskatoon Downtown Youth Centre Inc.
- Environment and Climate Change Canada
- John Howard Society Saskatoon
- Meadowgreen House for All Nations Drop in Centre
- Metis Nation of Saskatchewan
- Ministry of Social Services
- Persons Living with AIDS Network of Saskatchewan
- Prairie Harm Reduction
- Riversdale Business Improvement District
- Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon
- Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre
- Saskatoon Friendship Inn
- Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP)
- Saskatoon Indian and Metis Friendship Centre
- Saskatoon Crisis Intervention Services Inc
- Saskatoon Emergency Management Organization (EMO)
- Saskatoon Fire Department
- Saskatoon Police Service
- Saskatoon Transit
- Saskatoon Tribal Council
- Saskatoon Search and Rescue
- Saskatchewan Health Authority
- Saskatchewan Housing Corporation
- St. Paul’s Hospital
- Student Wellness Initiative Toward Community Health (SWITCH)
- The Bridge on 20th Fellowship Centre Inc.
- The Salvation Army
- The Lighthouse Supported Living Inc
- United Way of Saskatoon and Area