JIS News

A renewed attempt is being made by the Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation (KSAC) to address, in a more sustained way, living conditions of persons deemed homeless in the Corporate Area.

A meeting was held at the KSAC headquarters in downtown Kingston, on February 27, between the Parish Homeless Committee and stakeholder partners from several key organisations, to come up with strategies that will make an impact on the condition of the homeless.

The primary strategy agreed on is the setting up of administrative sub-groups to focus on bringing about the re-integration of homeless persons with their families.

Co-ordinator for the Homeless at the Poor Relief Department at the KSAC, Cyprian Lewis, told JIS News that another strategy is to re-integrate them back into society.

“We want to formulate three other sub-committees – Fundraising, Public Awareness and Housing and Welfare Committees. From these three, persons will be able to pool their professional resources and contact non-governmental organisations and sponsors in order to move forward,” he said.

Mr. Lewis said the sub-committees are expected to formulate plans and strategies that will be presented to the Poor Relief Department at the KSAC.

He called on members of the public to stop encouraging the homeless to stay on the streets by giving them handouts. Instead, he is recommending that donations be given to a central source – the Poor Relief agency – which will see to their care.

“What we’re looking at is to have one set place that they can go to, without being on the street,” Mr. Lewis emphasized.