City Continues to Aggressively Inspect & Repair Homeless Shelters

April 13, 2016

March Scorecard shows 44 percent decline in violations at non-cluster shelters, 61percent decline in high priority violations

NEW YORK––Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced that the Shelter Repair Squad and shelter providers have cut outstanding building code violations at non-cluster shelters by 44 percent since the City’s big inspection push in January, as reported in the March Shelter Repair Scorecard.

“We are meeting our promise to aggressively inspect and repair non-cluster homeless shelters so every family and individual in a homeless shelter has decent living conditions. As to the clusters, which have most of the violations, we are implementing our plan to stop using them. Just yesterday, we sent letters to two providers with an extremely high number of violations, demanding that they come up with an immediate plan to fix them or face replacement,” said Mayor de Blasio.

  • Total violations at non-cluster shelters were 5,852 at the end of March, compared to 10,474 at the end of January 2016, a decline of 44 percent.
  • Total high priority violations were 249 at the end of March, compared to 641 at January, 2016 – a drop of 61 percent. They were down 27 percent in March alone.
  • A total of 7,496 violations in non-cluster shelters have been cleared so far this year.
  • City agencies completed 3,987 inspections in the first quarter of 2016, compared to 8,665 in all of 2015.
  • Cluster shelters continue to have the most issues with a total of 12,579 violations at the end of March, compared to 14,604 at the end of January. The City continues to work on identifying sites for closure, which have been broken out from the cluster shelters in the March Scorecard.

The City sent letters to two cluster providers on Monday demanding that they promptly develop a plan for correcting the violations or face possibly being replaced as operators of those shelters. This action is based on a new law passed in the new State budget, which gives the State power to replace poorly performing shelter providers.

Cluster shelters are groups of individual apartments in larger buildings, and the violation total includes all the violations in each building, not those solely relating to the cluster units. Last month, the administration announced a plan to phase out the use of cluster shelters – where the majority of the violations are found. As the City ends the use of cluster shelters, returning them to the market so that the apartments can serve as low-rent housing, it will insist that building owners bring their buildings up to code and will work to ensure that they remain part of the City’s rent-regulated stock or enter an affordability program.

The Shelter Repair Scorecard list conditions at all homeless shelters in New York City that do not meet applicable regulations, and makes it possible to track progress in resolving them. Many of these violations are long-standing problems stemming from a lack of funding and some require capital repairs which take longer to make.

The scorecard can be accessed here. An Excel version of the scorecard can be accessed here.

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