Amazon has invested millions of dollars in designing and constructing a homeless shelter in Seattle, Amazon partnered with the non-profit Mary’s Place and is transforming its urban campuses into a home for the less fortunate. This home will be open in 2020 and will provide shelter to 275 people per night. This shelter will house on;y a small portion of homeless in the area as there are a total of 12,000 people living on the streets.
This shelter by Amazon will also be the largest homeless shelter in the state of Washington. The Vice president of Amazon for global real estate and facilities John Schoettler revealed that the company is looking to provide for the homeless in the city which was declared as a state of emergency in 2015. On making the announcement in 2017, he also presented the director of Mary’s Place homeless shelter in Seattle, with a golden key.
It is revealed that Mary’s Place will fund it’s own operations, programming, and staff while Amazon will pay for the utility bill and will also allow the organization to inhabit the space rent-free. The structure plan incorporates a large cafeteria-like dining room, playrooms and also personal bedrooms to enable ‘families to maintain their individual dignity’.
But some people aren’t convinced of Amazon’s generosity and they have been accused of gentrification and accused of contributing to the city’s homelessness problem as they expand their presence in Seattle as a result of which the housing costs have risen.