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New program provides homeless people with answering machines

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The Metis Housing Society of Prince George is launching a new program to provide voicemail to those who don't have phones. The initiative comes out of the understanding that a lack of a phone number can be a barrier to helping people get off the streets or into shelters. 

"Homelessness wouldn't be such a problem if everyone had opportunities to get employment," says Kay Robinson of the society. She points out that finding help can be tough when employers or housing organizations don't have any way of contacting the people in need. She recalls her own experience trying to find work while staying in a local shelter.  "People were not calling me back. No one would help me take messages for me."

The "Community Voicemail" will provide banks of phone numbers with voicemail to agencies that work with impoverished people. Robinson says people will be able to check their messages from any phone.

Listen to the Metis Housing Society explain the importance of answering machines:

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