GSD: “Still No Clarity On Emergency Housing”

The GSD has today said that there is “still a lack of clarity” in relation to provision of emergency housing for homeless men.

A statement continued: “The fact remains that when asked in parliament about their previous policy to provide a half way house for homeless men, the Government said it had abandoned that policy and that 11 flats had been earmarked for that purpose, managed by women in need. The clear impression was also that those flats were already available and that some had already been occupied by homeless men.

“Today the Government says that “the 11 flats which have been earmarked to assist men in need are in a state of refurbishment undergoing construction works and some, for example, are still without bathrooms.””

“No one is suggesting that homeless men jump the queue and it is precisely because the Government needs to be fair to both homeless men and those on the waiting list, that there needs to be transparency in the eligibility criteria and the process to determine whether someone is homeless or the circumstances in which they became homeless (e.g. is it self inflicted simply to jump the queue or is it genuine).

“These are questions we have asked in parliament and neither the GSD Opposition or those affected who qualify for Government housing are clear about this. There is more at stake than just the cases in the Retreat Centre. The scheme needs to be fair to all and the Opposition will continue to assess whether abandoning the policy of providing a half way house for men was the right decision. Finally, not everyone at the Retreat Centre has been provided with a temporary alternative at the Devil’s Tower hostel or the women’s refuge and it therefore not right to suggest otherwise.”