Being in Toronto’s homeless shelter system is “like riding an overstuffed subway or streetcar,” said Dana Dack, a harm reduction worker for Sistering, a Toronto non-profit for homeless or precariously-housed women.

“You have no space, you can’t breathe, and you start having anxiety,” Dack said. “At least when you get off of the subway or streetcar, you can go home.” This isn’t the case for those living in Toronto’s shelters.

The City of Toronto’s homeless shelter services are in immediate need of 1,500 additional beds for those in the homeless community, said Toronto Frontline Agencies and Advocates’ (TFAA) earlier this week during a press conference at Toronto City Hall.