The project to build a shelter for fathers and their children on Déragon Street was presented during a stormy briefing at Granby City Hall on Thursday.
D are exclamations like “it will not pass,” or “it is unacceptable” rang out in the room, accompanied by applause and media. Obviously, the majority of the room, composed of about sixty people residing in the sector concerned, was against the establishment of a shelter, a project supported by Réseau Maisons Oxygènes and Men’s Resources of La Haute- Yamaska (RHHY).
From the outset, RHHY’s general manager, Stéphane Prévost, wanted to clarify the nature of the project. It would not be a shelter for men with a history of violent or behavioral difficulties, as indicated by a leaflet distributed in the neighborhood, but a father-child home, offering psychological support and promoting the paternity of men .
“We thought there was a need in Granby. The closest houses of this type are in Sherbrooke or Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu. It’s not easy when you have a job in Granby or you have to look for an apartment on the spot, “says Prévost.
Without discrimination of any kind, the House would welcome men under several conditions, the main one being a father with children, whether in shared custody or exclusive, living a difficult situation.
For example, a man in a situation of divorce, separation, who finds himself “outside”, homeless, could stay a few days at home, in addition to receiving help with finding a new home. The interior would include all the necessary material needs: bed, dishes and furniture.
Therefore, says Mr. Prévost, it had to be arranged in a family environment, with amenities nearby, such as groceries, parks, stores, since the fathers will be autonomous, that is to say, that they will be in charge of cooking, cleaning, etc.
“We could not go home to an industrial park. It took a friendly environment. That’s why the choice stopped on rue Deragon.
This does not please at all citizens of the sector, who expressed their dissatisfaction and disagreement at the briefing held Thursday.
neighborhood peace and parking
“What we are against is having too many services in the same area. We are already overwhelmed: the CLSC, the hospital, the MRDI, it ends more! “Exclaims the citizen who distributed the leaflets where it could read” men’s shelter “.
Danny Tétreault, who has been living on Déragon Street since 1995, spoke of the fear that this house might have other functions that would harm the peace of the neighborhood.
“From Lafontaine Street to Des Érables, there are 10 houses, including one that is not family-owned (the House of Repit Déragon). You want to add a second, which gives 20% of houses on the street. I want our neighborhood to remain peaceful. ”
Many citizens have criticized the project for not only hindering peace on a daily basis, but also devaluing the value of residences and the sector. District Councilor Robert Vincent was absent during the meeting, which raised some indignation.
“The traffic on this street is incredible,” says Robert Bergeron. The construction of a six-storey building with a CHSLD and the CLSC … that’s enough. In the city of Granby, we have to work in teams. It is not up to one area of the city to have any special projects at the psychosocial level. The project in question is excellent, I have no problem with that. But we must ask the question: does this project have its place on rue Déragon? Can he be somewhere else? ”
Finally, a lady shared her concerns about the unknown: who will stay there? Will they be good people? Will they pay attention?
Currently awaiting approval from the City of Granby, the new house would be supported by the Oxygen House Network, which now offers 144 beds in 12 regions. Its mission is to promote the deployment, consolidation and coordination of housing and support resources for fathers experiencing personal, family or marital difficulties.
The City of Granby took into account the comments of the citizens, who were heard and who will be considered in the decision on the acceptance of the project, which is only in stage 1.
The second stage will take place on 19 August and will consist of the adoption of the second draft resolution. Following the publication of a public notice on August 21 in La Voix de l’Est , citizens will be able to go to the City Registry to obtain the necessary documents to request a register.
Citizens will then have 8 days to file the application with the required number of signatures, from August 21 to 29, to force a referendum on the project.