Need a warming station? In Tuscaloosa, there are few options
By WVUA 23 News Reporter Gracie Johnson
If you’re having a hard time staying warm at home, there are places families can go and spend the night when temperatures dip below freezing. But in Tuscaloosa, those spots could be complicated to find.
You might think warming stations are something the city offers, but when WVUA 23 News reached out to the mayor’s office, they suggested anyone in need start with the Salvation Army, located at 2902 Greensboro Ave. in Tuscaloosa.
They’re open every day to men, women and families who need a safe space to spend the night, said Salvation Army Social Services Director Lakamy Williams.
“We do try to keep in touch with the Emergency Management Agency to try and post our information on their website just in case somebody calls in,” Williams said. “And then we do get a lot of walk-ins.”
Williams said the Salvation Army tries to ensure its visitors are as comfortable as possible by providing them with amenities like personal hygiene items, snacks and blankets.
Anyone exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms will not be turned away. Instead, they are quarantined and given special care.
“We try to put them in a situation where they are isolated from everybody else,” said Williams. “If they need to quarantine, we will follow the (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines on being quarantined.”
Tuscaloosa’s Salvation Army has room for around 80 people in its shelter. When they reach capacity, Williams said they make arrangements with outside organizations for additional housing.
All you need to stay is a photo ID so staff can run a background check upon your arrival. The Salvation Army can be reached at 205-632-3691.
Another potential resource for those in need is the United Way of West Alabama’s 211 service.