A New Jersey law requires all counties in the state to have a plan in place to shelter all homeless individuals during conditions of severe weather. Under this “Code Blue” law, counties will issue Code Blue Alerts whenever the temperature drops below 25 degrees Fahrenheit without precipitation or below 32 degrees Fahrenheit with precipitation and/or when the National Weather Service wind chill temperature will be zero degrees Fahrenheit or less for a period of two hours or more.
In Mercer County, the Rescue Mission of Trenton is designated a Code Blue shelter. Under normal conditions, the shelter is open from 4 p.m. until 8 a.m. daily, but when Code Blue Alerts are issued, the Rescue Mission of Trenton is open 24 hours. The shelter is located at 89 Ewing Street, Trenton, NJ 08609.
Families who are in need of shelter during a Code Blue can call the Mercer County Board of Social Services at 609-989-4320 Monday through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. or the Homeless Hotline at 609-468-8296 Monday through Friday after 4:30 p.m. and on weekends.
The County of Mercer also has designated branches of the Mercer County Library System as warming sites, where people can escape the cold. For hours of operation and locations, please visit the Library System’s website. Local municipalities also may have warming center accommodations; please check with your local municipality for that information.