02 Oct De Blasio speeds up timeline to open domestic violence shelters
Mayor Bill de Blasio accelerated his timeline to open shelters following a Post report that found it took the city nearly four years to come up with barely half the safe havens it promised to domestic-violence victims.
In 2015 the mayor vowed to add 400 sorely needed transitional housing units for victims, but by last March the city had only awarded contracts for 165 units. By last month the city had approved another 130 units– leaving an additional 105 ones to be provided.
City spokesman Isaac McGinn said the current tight real-estate inventory made it hard to find affordable sites.
By Wednesday morning there was a different response.
“The team took another look and determined they have enough applicants right now to award 105 units by the end of the year,” de Blasio’s Press Secretary Freddi Goldstein said.
Goldstein did not immediately return a message asking how the city was able to fast-track the process.
The Rev. Carmen Rivera — a victims-rights advocate and domestic abuse survivor who’d questioned the mayor’s priorities to her cause in Tuesday’s Post article — applauded the accelerated approach.
“Housing provides an escape for the victim. It is the light in their darkness. A place of safety and refuge,” said Rivera, 44, said.
“Thank you, Mayor de Blasio for listening and taking action,” she said.