New domestic abuse shelter opens in Charlotte

New domestic abuse shelter opens in Charlotte

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by ANN SHERIDAN / NBC Charlotte Staff

Bio | Email | Follow: @SheridanWCNC

WCNC.com

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 9:34 AM

Updated Tuesday, Dec 18 at 9:42 AM

CHARLOTTE,  N.C. —The Domestic Abuse Shelter that was scheduled to open Monday night, will not be accepting clients today, according to the spokesperson for the new Clyde and Ethel Dickson Domestic Violence Shelter.

The center, on West Boulevard, still needs safety measures put in place, according to Bill Coy.

He called the situation “frustrating,” but said safety is the center’s main objective, and opening without all procedures in place would be irresponsible.

The new $8.6 million center will house 80 women and children when it does open.  The previous shelter had only 29 beds, and left many women and children with no place to find refuge, according to Coy.

The site is gated and fenced, with a play area for children that is intentionally protected from outside view.

'We want them to know they deserve a nice place to live and they are worthy of this,”  said Karen Parker, who helped raise money and plan the shelter.

“When you have a facility like this and it’s beautiful and warm, you can breathe again,” said a former domestic violence victim, who is now an advocate for women and children trying to escape abuse.

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