Salvation Army shelter in Saint John in jeopardy of closing
Saint John Centre of Hope has 27 emergency beds
The oldest and largest homeless shelter for men in Saint John has warned its staff it may have to close at the end of the month because it's running out of money.
The Salvation Army has turned to the province to find more funding, but if that doesn't happen it's unclear what will happen to the dozens of men who stay there.
In between jobs, basically broke, Ashley McGoldrick spent a week at the Saint John Centre of Hope earlier this month. He said he's met many other men who have nowhere else to go.
“There's going to be a lot of disappointed people here. I can tell you that,” he said. “I've seen a lot of people who really rely and depend on this place and they absolutely need it.”
Union representative Marcos Salib, who speaks for the 40 workers, said the Salvation Army has been running deficits for the last few years. Plus, the building needs expensive repairs.
“That’s what we were told, that they may be shutting down at the end of February,” Salib said. “When it's raining, the employees have to put buckets around because it rains inside the building.”
Salib said the building contains 27 beds for emergency lodging, plus 40 beds for special care clients, including people with special needs who require assisted living services.
He said the future of the entire facility is up in the air.
The province provides more than $1 million in annual funding.
The Saint John Centre of Hope is the only year-round homeless shelter for men in Saint John.