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• Can neighboring property owners prevent a church from operating a shelter for the homeless on its property? The was the issue before a New York court. In response to a citywide need for emergency shelters for thousands of homeless, an Episcopal church in New York City opened its doors to groups of 10 homeless men for temporary emergency shelter 3 nights each week. The church was part of a network of some 380 churches and synagogues in the city that provide more than 400,000 individual nights of temporary shelter annually. The city provides the churches and synagogues with beds, linens, clothing, toiletries, and cleaning supplies, and inspects shelters for compliance with health and safety regulations. Homeless men are transported to the church from a "drop-in center," and arrive at 9:30 PM. They are picked up by bus the following morning at 6:00 AM. From the time of their arrival ...

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  • July 2, 1990