De Blasio announces homeless shelter improvement plan

City will deploy “SWAT teams” to address violations

May.May 12, 2015 09:30 AM

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a new initiative on Monday that aims to immediately improve conditions in the city’s homeless shelters.

The $12.5 million initiative will utilize 100 city employees across multiple agencies to visit 500 shelters and address the issues, Capital New York reported.

A scathing report released in March by the Department of Investigation found that many of the city’s homeless shelters were suffering from unsanitary and unsafe conditions including dead vermin, lack of electricity, and rusted staircases.

“We will be deploying hundreds of special SWAT teams to accelerate critical repairs at homeless shelters all over the city. We want to help ensure every shelter is safe and healthy for all its residents,” the mayor said during a press conference outside the Corona Family Residence, a Queens homeless shelter. “This is going to be an all-hands-on-deck effort.”

Most problems can be addressed quickly, he said. “Typical violations that we encounter can and will be fixed within seven days of being identified; that will be the most common category.”

De Blasio has seen the number New Yorkers living in homeless shelters surge to record figures of nearly 60,000 this past December, according to city data. That figure has dropped since the winter to about 56,000. [Capital NY] — Tess Hofmann

Related Articles

DSS commissioner Steven Banks with 148 West 124th Street (left) and 79 East 125th Street (right) (Credit: Google Maps and Getty Images)

City will convert 14 apartment buildings into housing for homeless

HUD Secretary Carson: Religious orgs should rescue homeless

HUD Secretary Carson: Religious orgs should rescue homeless

Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson with an aerial of 320 Concord Avenue, the site of the jail project (Credit: Getty Images, Google Maps)

Housing complex takes South Bronx jail project to court

From left: Obligo COO Omri Dor, Jetty CEO Michael Rudoy, Rhino CEO Paraag Sarva and The Guarantor CEO Julien Bonneville (Credit: The French Studio via YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn)

Startups salivate as pols target security deposits

Mayor Bill de Blasio (Credit: Getty Images)

Four more lead-paint laws hit landlords

Mayor Bill de Blasio (Credit: Getty Images)

“Good cause” by any other name: De Blasio calls for tenant protections

Mayor Bill de Blasio (Credit: Getty Images)

De Blasio warns of ‘bad landlords,’ admits affordable housing plan ‘is not enough’

Mayor Bill de Blasio (Credit: Getty Images)

First broker fees, now security deposits? Mayor wants to free certain apartments from such payments