Homeless families in two dilapidated shelters to be relocated
Hundreds of children and their families will be moved from two homeless shelters cited for deplorable and hazardous conditions, officials announced Friday.
More than 400 children and families will be relocated from Brooklyn’s Auburn Family Residences in Fort Greene and the Catherine Street shelter in lower Manhattan.
“We won’t leave these children and these families behind. We believe in our fundamental responsibility to lift up those going through adversity and crisis,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement.
Both facilities will be transitioned into shelters serving adult couples without minors.
By the end of the school year, 64 families with children at Auburn will be relocated to permanent housing or other shelters without shared bathrooms. The conversion of the Catharine Street shelter, where 83 families with children reside, will be completed by the fall.
Since January, 40 families in the Auburn facility have been relocated. Vacant units at the facility were used by families seeking shelter during severe winter weather.
The mayor’s office also announced plans to reform the two shelters, including improving the facilities and increasing security.
A culinary arts training program is planned for the ground floor of Auburn. Plans for the Catherine Street shelter include security training and job placement programs.
The reforms come after a extensive New York Times series noting conditions at the Auburn facility. The series, “Invisible Child,” focused on 12-year-old Dasani Coates, whose family spent three years at Auburn.
Coastes joined Public Advocate Letitia James at her inauguration last month.
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