Minneapolis police initiative aims to help the homeless - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Minneapolis police initiative aims to help the homeless

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The Minneapolis Police Department is changing the way it interacts with people who don't have a permanent address.

Minnesota Public Radio reports that the department's Homelessness and Vulnerable Populations Initiative is an effort to help ease the struggles of people living on the streets.

Police Chief Medaria Arradondo says the program is part of a culture shift in policing.

As part of the initiative, officers visit homeless people to provide them with food and water, and help connect them to social service agencies.

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey says finding permanent homes is the overall goal. He acknowledges that housing the homeless is a larger task than the police department can handle on its own. But he says officers are in a good position to provide frontline support.

Information from: Minnesota Public Radio News, http://www.mprnews.org

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