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Minn. homeless shelter responds to claims it kicked out family after argument

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MOORHEAD—Homeless families, once in a shelter, may be facing this weather head on.

Someone who claims to be a Churches United employee told WDAY news that a family with four kids was kicked out after a verbal argument, and that person said it's not an isolated incident.

A pregnant mother, Kendra Wallery, told us she has until 9 a.m. Tuesday to leave with her 14-month-old daughter, because she said one word.

"I said the word 'f***ot.' They said that it was hateful talk and that I needed to get out," Wallery said.

Wallery said she ended up in the shelter after a life of drug addiction in Grand Forks. She was hoping this move to Fargo was a chance to start anew.

She said the shelter has a three-strike policy, but Wallery says this is her first strike.

While they can't talk about specific residents, the executive director of Churches United says "one" profane word won't get you kicked out.

They also say they don't have a three-strike policy.

"People would be exited pretty frequently. When folks are in crisis, their language isn't always what one might hear in less stressful environments," said Pastor Sue Koesterman, executive director of Churches United.

She said hate speech directed at someone or used in a threatening way is grounds for removal.

Wallery said she used the word in passing and didn't say it to anyone.

"I wasn't anywhere near violent towards anybody," she said.

Koesterman said this alone is not grounds for removal.

"If someone were to say that word in passing, It would not typically be our policy to exit someone for that," Kosterman said.

Regardless of what really happened, Wallery doesn't have a plan after this shelter.

"I'm calling around. Being that it is holiday today, there's no resources open," Wallery said. She's still holding out hope that this new life challenge won't leave her and her daughter on the streets.

Koesterman said hundreds of people are on their waitlist. Metro selters are at full capacity every night.