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Homeless Shelter

The Mayor is bringing a homeless shelter to 243-02 Northern Blvd., the site of the former Pride of Judea.  The Dept. of Homeless Shelter (DHS) plan is for 72 homeless women. The Pride of Judea was purchased by a private developer who will contract with DHS and a private provider such as Samaritan Village.  The plan is to put 25 women on each of the three floors on cots in a barracks like configuration with one bathroom for every ten women; this amounts to only 60 square feet per person.  We do not oppose helping the homeless, but this is not the way.  DCA has engaged a law firm to challenge these proposed living conditions and obtain justice for the homeless. 

 

We have initiated a fundraising drive to achieve this goal. We are am happy to say we have reached 85% of our goal.  Please consider making a donation today to DCA through our web page Pay Pal account on our Home page or mail a check. To all of you who have made contributions thank you!

This page is a resource to help you learn about the facts and get involved. Click on the links below for action steps, additional documentation and information:

Here is what you can do

This document will provide you with the necessary action steps to get

involved. Get

 

NYC and Department of Homeless Services (DHS) Proposal

This document is an overview of the proposal for the homeless shelter. Get

 

Points to Consider

Information to consider when writing letters or emails to public officials or the press. Get

Dear Neighbor Letter

This is a sample letter for distribution to the residents in our community.  Get

DCA Community Flyer

Use this flyer to get the message out. Get

DHS Homeless Shelter Petition

Use this petition to to get the message out and oppose the current conditions of the Homeless Shelter. Get

February 1, 2021

This is an open letter to our community and our elected leaders and the entire City of New York.  Homelessness is a serious and heart wrenching crisis in our city.  The Mayor has had seven years to address the issue in a humane manner.  He has failed to do so. 

 

Evidence of his failure is his attempt to open a homeless shelter for 72 older women at 243-02 Northern Blvd. the former site of the Pride of Judea in building of 7,576 square feet.  There is no outdoor space for residents or onsite parking for staff, visitors, vendors, or transportation vans. Vans will be necessary because there is only one limited local bus line whose service is being curtailed. Street parking is limited due to no parking regulations prohibiting street parking during rush hours. The building is adjacent to single family homes, a church, school and a community facility residence. The building is currently permitted by means of a BSA variance on an R1-2 site to operate as a mental health clinic during normal business hours and not as a 24 hour residence.  If the operator did have permission to operate a homeless shelter, the ZR Use Group designation would be with a 30 day maximum time a resident could stay.  The city has said residents would be allowed to stay for up to one year, a violation.

 

The Mayor in his effort to save money, his words, is seeking to move homeless people from hotels to warehouse locations such as this site. In a hotel you would have two women to a room with one bathroom, not perfect but decent.  In this site 72 women will be given cots and crammed into armory like or barracks like conditions with only one bathroom for every ten women for a year.  They will have less than 100 square feet per person.  People in prison have more space and have only to share bathroom facilities with other one person. This is inhumane, this is wrong.  It violates International Humanitarian standards.

 

We understand the need to find housing for the homeless, but the Mayor is pretending to provide housing for the homeless by warehousing them in slum like conditions.  Let’s start today, a real effort to provide housing for the homeless.  Have the city take this building and create efficiency apartments for 15 women with subsidized rentals as permanent housing for the homeless. What about Creedmoor as an alternative location, it has space.

 

DCA did not learn of this proposal from the city, the community board, or our elected officials.  In fact, our elected officials were aware of this proposal and had discussions with the city but not in consultation or the courtesy of a notice to the community. Why?

 

We need transparency and an investigation into the relationship of the city with the owners of these properties, the shelter operators, and the city government.  Why is it that the same real estate interests are purchasing properties throughout the city and then linking up with non for profits who package a homeless deals with the city?  Homeless shelter leases are short term leases. Are the shelters a means to finance future land speculation for developers and not in the interest helping the homeless?  

 

We say no to this inhumane effort and want to know now where all our elected officials stand.

Yours,

Sean M Walsh

Douglaston Civic Association  •  917-862-3286  •  douglaston.civic.association@gmail.com  •  PO Box 630222, Douglaston, NY 11363