Homes have been designated in the red zone for elderly persons whose family members have abandoned them at emergency shelters.
Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves said recently that permission had been given for the Roads, Buildings & General Services Authority – BRAGSA to refurbish buildings identified in Orange Hill in the red zone to accommodate some of these persons.
It was noted that there are more than forty elderly persons abandoned at the shelters, which the Prime Minister said is worrying.
He said children are also being abandoned, which is a criminal charge for parents.
Gonsalves said that parents would cry poverty, but it is their responsibility to take care of their own, noting that the government also has a system in place to help persons in need.
One thousand, one hundred and thirty-four evacuees are housed at 31 shelters across St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves on Thursday said that shelter numbers were stuck at around 1,500 for several weeks.
Gonsalves said with the recent all-clear for residents up to Owia to return to their homes, that number has now been decreased to what it is now.
As of Thursday, 26 August, 24 of the 31 shelters are schools.
Gonsalves said that’s a significant number to look at because schools are scheduled to open on 4 October.
“We want to be in a position to take the furniture in, complete the painting where we have to paint, do all the repairs and the like to the schools, a week or so before the 4 October”.
Residents of Owia were given the all-clear to return home on Monday, 23 August.