Time running out for San Jose flood victims as shelter set to close

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Time is running out for dozens of San Jose flood victims still living at an emergency shelter. The city has announced plans to close it down on Apr. 10.

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City officials tell us there are still about 60 people, including families with kids, sleeping on cots at Seven Trees Community Center. The plan is not to kick them out, but to find them better accommodations.

Cameras are not allowed inside the shelter to protect the privacy of the flood victims who live there.

It has been about four weeks since they were forced from their homes. In another few weeks, they'll have to move on again.

"We all recognize this kind of emergency shelter is not ever intended to be a long-term solution for anybody," said spokesman David Vossbrink.

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The City of San Jose has set a target date to close the shelter.

Vossbrink says the goal is to get people into more stable housing. "We're asking our community, particularly the community of property owners and landlords in other parts of our city, 'Can you step up. Maybe you've got a unit that's vacant,'" he said. "We're not talking about hundreds of units. We're talking about dozens of units and should be able to find ways of making that happen in a city of a million people."

Judith Farias and her family are still not allowed inside their Rock Springs apartment. She says they were very close to going to the shelter themselves. "We were going to stay," she said.

It may be lucky, but it's not an ideal living situation. "Then we got lucky and my uncle said we could stay at his house. Six of us, six of them -- 12 of us in a two-bedroom house, so it's kind of crowded."

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The city says, while it hopes to move everyone from the shelter into a vacant apartment or hotel, those are still short-term solutions. Ultimately, they'd like to see flood victims back in their own, restored homes.

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