Speaking after joining workers at Regina Coeli women’s hostel which is facing closure, PBP Cllr Fiona Ferguson has called for an emergency council meeting to put pressure on the Minister for Communities and the Housing Executive to save the service and jobs:
“As leaders from the Executive, including Michelle O’Neill and Paul Givan, stood on the steps of Stormont launching domestic abuse strategies, workers were forced to occupy a women’s hostel which provides a vital refuge in this city.
“Words and strategies from the Executive are pointless without funding and services on the ground. 12 staff will lose their jobs and vulnerable women will lose a vital refuge if these doors close – the service must be saved.
“I am involved in organising for an emergency council meeting which would bring the Minister, Housing Executive, staff and unions into a room to find a sustainable solution.
“Domestic and sexual abuse has not been properly addressed for decades across the North. Women deserve much better and the Executive must step up to the plate here, to show their commitment to tackling this incredibly serious and prevalent issue.”