Residents in Montreal’s Little Burgundy neighbourhood weren’t happy to find out the Open Door, a drop-in centre that supports homeless and low income people in Montreal, may have found a new home in their backyard.
Some say they don’t support the idea that the centre could move into Bible Way Pentecostal Church, at 2390 Coursol St.
“The property values would diminish tremendously,” Julie Bourne, a resident, told Global News.
“I’m very disturbed about them moving here. I would love to see them move somewhere else. I would be more than happy to help them find another address.”
Others say they don’t have a problem with the centre.
“We can always say ‘somewhere else,’ but where will they go? ‘Somewhere else’ will always be a problem,” said Daniel Gauvreau, a resident.
“I don’t feel they’re a problem or a threat for the community or the people on the street.”
The centre is one of the few in Montreal that allows intoxicated people inside and offers all sorts of support to its daily clientele of 150 people, 40 per cent of whom are Inuit.
The programs include facilitating rehab, offering medical services and helping people find jobs.
“The proposed spot is not necessarily an ideal one, so that’s why we’re looking at other options. We want to help Open Door function,” said councillor Craig Sauvé.
Open Door had been operating out of the St. Stephen’s Anglican Church in Westmount for the last 30 years, but administrators were told they would have to leave by July 31 as the church had been sold.
Last week, David Chapman, director of the Open Door shelter, confirmed to Global News a lease for a new location had not yet been signed, but it was close to being finalized.