The government is reconsidering the deadline given to occupants of the temporary dome housing in Abaco to vacate. Minister of State, Myles Laroda spoke to the media on the subject saying, “it makes no sense for a government to evict residents with no place to send them and so the balance continues. Deadlines have been given but we are also at a position where if those hard deadlines are not met we could always adjust to ensure that those residents are not taken from domes and put on the streets.”
Domes were set to be vacated by August 27th, 2022. Chairman of the Disaster Reconstruction Authority, Alex Storr, had said that dome occupants would receive a $4,000 payment to assist with relocation from the social services ministry. While some of the domes have been vacated, there are still people living in the domes, Minister Laroda was unable to say exactly how many. He said, “there are problems even with that. You have individuals who would have moved out and once those domes became empty individuals have moved in. So the government is between a rock and a hard place, if you’re talking about solving one problem only to create another.”
September 1st will mark three years since the passing of Hurricane Dorian in Grand Bahama and Abaco. Minister Laroda informed of what the government has done to assist affected Bahamians especially with home repairs. The Minnis administration had underfunded the repair program and others have been added since that time. Updating on this issue, Minister Laroda said, “we had to source those funds and then we have to put protocols in place with regards to how those funds would be disbursed.”
As to whether the government has done enough Minister Laroda said, “Dorian was one of those monster storms. I represent a community of Pinewood of which there are still refugees from Abaco in my constituency who would love to go home. The reality is there is a shortage of residences and so there is always more to be done. This will be with us for years.”
The government has scheduled a week of events remembering those who perished in Hurricane Dorian beginning August 26th.