Senior citizen of Russia, Westmoreland to get new home under Gov’t’s Indigent Housing Programme
ST JAMES, Jamaica – Ninety-five-year-old Alfonso Bruce, a resident of Russia in Westmoreland is set to benefit from the Government’s Indigent Housing Programme under which he will be provided with a new home.
The initiative, which is administered through the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development’s Municipal Social Assistance (MSA) programme and executed by the Poor Relief Department, is designed to address the housing crisis among the poor and most vulnerable.
During a visit on Wednesday to Bruce’s current home, which has fallen into disrepair, Portfolio Minister, Desmond McKenzie, told reporters that the ministry’s technical team and the Board of Supervision have been instructed to commence investigations into the resident’s case immediately.
“There is no way somebody of this age in this parish should be living in this condition. It is not fit for human beings to be living in, and I am going to do everything as quickly as possible to ensure that we build something so that his caregiver and himself can have a decent roof over their heads,” he stated.
McKenzie indicated that Bruce should be listed as one of the parish’s registered poor, if the municipality has not already done so.
“If he is not on the Poor Relief Department’s list as a registered poor, I am going to be instructing the Westmoreland Municipal Corporation to commence the paperwork to get this man on the list, so that his needs can be attended to,” he said.
The minister emphasised that more should be done to aid the indigent in Westmoreland, noting that there is sufficient funding to support poor relief programmes in the parish.
“[Westmoreland is] in the top-five parishes that receive more funding than most parishes for poor relief support,” he added.
McKenzie’s assessment of Bruce’s home formed part of a working visit to the parish, which included stops at the Whitehouse, Negril and Savanna-la-Mar markets; a newly repaired stretch of road in the Bigwoods community, and the Sheffield cemetery.