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Homeless shelters filling up due to bitter cold

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INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- A shortage of homeless shelter space for families is getting attention because of the bitter cold conditions. All the beds have been full at the Salvation Army's Crossroads Shelter.

This family shelter has only nine rooms, and is considered the only emergency shelter in eastern Jackson County.

There's another one like it in Olathe, Ks., where there's a waiting list of more than 50 families trying to get in.

That's a problem for single moms like Samantha Fisher. She has five children and recently lost her job. She's been living in a northland hotel room on temporary assistance. But that money is running out, and she wants to move into a family shelter.

"I think Kansas City does need to make it better to where they have rooms that are capable to fit families of large quantities," Fisher said. "I understand most people have one or two children. But you do have people that have a lot of children. Not that they don't want to work or aren't trying to do anything. People come up with bad times in their lives and  it will be nice to get that emergency assistance when you need it."

The good news is Fisher has been hired for a job that she starts next week with an orientation class. She's only looking for shelter until she gets that first paycheck and can find a place to live.

FOX 4 News helped Fisher secure the last available spot at the City Union Mission's family shelter. The Salvation Army says family shelter space is a growing need as the charity is seeing more two parent families looking for places to stay.

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