Housing crisis needs attention, psychiatrist review overdue: Rogers

NDP MHA Gerry Rogers

NDP Justice and Housing Critic Gerry Rogers (MHA, St. John’s Centre) had questions in the House of Assembly today about psychiatric services in the penitentiary system, and how government is addressing the province’s housing crisis aside from social housing.

Rogers cited the minister responsible for the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation, who spoke in the House last week about a minister’s committee, a deputy minister’s committee, and an interdisciplinary committee within government that, he said, deal with questions related to the overall picture of housing in the province.

“Social housing is full,” Rogers said in the House of Assembly today. “Housing costs have doubled since 2004 and are still rising. Rental costs are rising; vacancy rates hover around one per cent province-wide. Large resource developments are on the horizon and now mortgages are harder to get.

“Mr. Speaker I ask the minister, aside from social housing, what exactly are his committees doing to address this overall growing housing crisis for the working families of Newfoundland and Labrador?”

Rogers also noted that another resident of the province is going, at her own request, to a federal prison because she cannot get the proper psychiatric services here in our penitentiary system.

“Complaints have come from all corners including a scathing report from the Citizens Representative's Office,” said Rogers. “Appropriate medical treatment is a vital part of rehabilitation.

“What is the minister going to do to improve psychiatric services for our inmates?” asked Rogers in the House.

READ THE FULL EXCHANGE FROM QUESTION PERIOD

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