Residents raise concerns about new homeless shelter in St Paul's
CONCERNS have been raised by St Paul's residents about the decision to open a homeless shelter.
The facility has been launched by charity P3 this week to help keep five people off the streets.
But Daud McDonald, vice- chairman of St Paul's Residents' Association, believes it is the wrong location for the service.
He said: "I am not against homeless people having a shelter. They need somewhere to go. But why does it have to be in St Paul's where we already have a lot of social provision?"
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
The St Paul's Road resident wants to know why residents were not consulted about the shelter opening in the area.
He added: "It just feels like the council is dumping on us yet again."
County councillor for the ward Charmain Shepherd (LD, St Mark's, St Paul's and St Peter's) admitted she did not know the shelter was opening in that location until residents told her.
The shelter has been opened by charity P3 after it was awarded a contract by Gloucestershire County Council to deliver services to help tackle homelessness.
An existing night shelter run by Gear (Gloucestershire Emergency Accommodation Resources) in Gloucester closed on Wednesday.
P3 said it wanted to make sure its shelter was ready to take over.
It is also opening an eight-bed shelter in Gloucester and an additional 17 beds in different units across the county.
A spokesman for P3 defended the decision to open in St Paul's. He said: "Due to the timescale we had to find a property of this size, in an area close to local amenities; this particular property was the most suitable for the needs of our clients.
"The five people living in the house were originally from the area and are hoping to regain their independence.
"It is the policy of P3 to not accept homeless people who have not come through the referral pathways.
"This means there won't be people queuing on the street, or congregating around the property.
"We are more than happy to attend any community meetings to reassure any concerns residents may have."
Councillor Peter Jeffries, cabinet member for housing and safety at Cheltenham Borough Council, said: "We welcome any accommodation in Cheltenham that helps people who are homeless.
"This is the first time that we've had direct access accommodation of this nature in the borough."