Despite pushback from local leaders, the city is moving forward with its plans to build a new shelter for homeless families in Far Rockaway under Mayor Bill de Blasio’s “Turning the Tide” initiative.
The initiative, aimed to end decades-old stop-gap measures such as using cluster sites and commercial hotel facilities, will see the new shelter will be built in place of the Far Rockaway Cathedral church at 1252 Brunswick Ave.
“As we implement our borough-based approach, we are ending the inefficient stop-gap facilities citywide while opening high-quality facilities New Yorkers in need deserve as they stabilize their lives,” NYC DSS-DHS said in a statement. “This high-quality, borough-based facility will be the first of its kind in this Community District, offering 72 adult families experiencing homelessness the opportunity to get back on their feet safely and closer to their anchors of life. Working together with neighbors and not-for-profit provider Black Vets for Social Justice, we’re confident that these new Yorkers will be warmly welcomed and through collaborative support and compassion, we will make this the best experience it can be for all.”
According to the city, there are 489 households comprised of 984 individuals from Queens Community District 14 in shelters across the city, however, there are only 831 sheltered in CD 14.
The new facility at 12-52 Brunswick Ave. will provide 72 homeless adult families the opportunity to be sheltered in their home borough, closer to their support networks including schools, jobs, healthcare, family, social services and communities they call home.
“The Rockaway Peninsula has many needs, but a seventh homeless shelter is not one of them,” Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato said. “I strongly oppose the proposed shelter at 1252 Brunswick Avenue in Far Rockaway.”