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Shanty Town Census – Majority Have Status

Officials are pictured preparing to begin the shanty town census. Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff

Officials are pictured preparing to begin the shanty town census. Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff

By AVA TURNQUEST

Tribune Chief Reporter

aturnquest@tribunemedia.net

AN “OVERWHELMING” 70 percent of shanty town residents surveyed in New Providence have a legal right to reside in the country, according to the preliminary findings of a recent government survey.

Twenty-three percent of interviewees did not provide information on their legal status, and only six percent of residents that did were undocumented.

The largest grouping, 32 percent, held work permits, and 21 percent of interviewees had permanent residency, survey findings revealed.

Bahamian residents stood at 15 percent, and three percent of interviewees had a spousal permit.

The survey conducted by the Shanty Town Action Task Force (SATF) assessed 1,410 residents from the 428 households, and revealed most are long-term residents aged 40 or older with an average of three persons per household and total weekly incomes of less than $400.

While the assessment was intended to survey the head of households, convenience sampling methodology allowed for any responsible adult to be interviewed.

It furthered the predominately male interviewees, some 38 percent, could be indicative of other social, economic, and employment factors given that assessments were conducting during the day.

Twenty-six per cent of interviewees were identified as women, while 36 percent were categorized as unknown.

The largest number of households, 44 per cent, was located in the Carmichael constituency - a figure the report noted was consisted with the 2013 report from the Department of Environmental Health Services.

Two-hundred households had electricity, and of those residents, 35 percent had an electricity supply from BPL while others predominantly used electricity generators. Thirty percent (132) of households have indoor flushed toilet facilities, but only 96 households had indoor running water.

Enumerators recorded 536 minors (aged 18 and under) just about evenly split by sex, with 61 percent attending school.

The report prepared by Dr Cherita Moxey from the Ministry of Health.

The survey was conducted in ten shanty towns over a four week period from Elizabeth, Carmichael (Garden Hills), and Golden Isles constituencies, and with the help of 60 enumerators from various governmental agencies.

Those shanty towns were located on: Montegomery Avenue, 115 residents; Allen Drive; 28 residents; Bellot Road; 10; Golden Gates Road, 291 residents ; Lazaretto Road, 56 residents; Cowpen Road (West), 165 residents; Bacardi Road East, 39 residents, and West, 96 residents; and Lumumba Lane, 160 residents. The report also included 27 residents who participated but were not categorized by location.

Less than five percent of residents surveyed had a disability, with the largest disability grouping of 40 people being sight-related.

A building assessment report was also conducted by the Ministry of Works, and the findings of 19 inspectors over a three week period are expected to be made public next week.

Comments

John 5 months, 1 week ago

Does this come as a surprise? That the majority of residents in the shanty’s have status. Some seem to forget that this country experience 10 solid years of economic hardship. And that is what some residents have been reduced to. Living in the shantytowns. Otherwise homeless. And Social Services effort to get some of these persons into rental units will be mostly fruitless because once they move in they have no means of paying the rent or utilities. So the process has to be a gradual one. And if the economy does not get better the numbers in the shantytowns will continue to increase.

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licks2 5 months, 1 week ago

How many times must I say that yinna please read carefully before you run ya mouth!! Don't allow ya "feelings" to blind ya ability to reason!! the only status that allows breaking the law and not getting deported is citizenship. Just think. . .you are here on a work permit and you are found in breach of multiple laws in the host country? Check with our authorities here or anywhere in the world about how law breakers with work permits, green cards and other "allowances" status in the developed nations that are annually deported back to their country for such violations of the host nation's laws!!

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TalRussell 5 months, 1 week ago

Ma Comrades, careful how you buy into the true master plan behind Imperial red shirts "skewed" shantytowns census..... now they must really think - finally they hold mSmSRER PLAN between their slippery red fingers the excuse they were looking for before committing even more of People's Public Purse's Monies to establish new far reaching housing and intended immigration targeted programs to supplement their deep in trouble with 91,409 voting red shirts back on 10th May 2017. Watch 'em hard at work for da wrong people. Remember, they commissioned some 50 individuals to obtain the census's results...... almost equal total size population of Inagua... and why no master pan census for out island islanders of Inagua? {No making up the commission of 50 }.

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TheMadHatter 5 months, 1 week ago

I dont know if this report was written by the joker or the midnight toker. Either way, the Bahamas is over.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 5 months, 1 week ago

Hog wash! That 70% is markedly reduced when those who bribed senior immigration officials to obtain resident status are excluded together with those our government intends to eventually grant legal status simply because they claim to have been born here even though both parents were/are illegal immigrants. This shanty town survey was nothing but a charade put on by the Haitian-friendly Minnis-led FNM government to make fools out of the more gullible among us. Frankie Campbell is no doubt all smiles!

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My2centz 5 months, 1 week ago

The government is so naïve (or pretends to be) when it comes to Haitians. They honestly still have no clue who resides in those shanty towns. How can they honestly believe that those who harbor illegals are forthcoming in this survey, when they go to great lengths to evade the same officials?

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TalRussell 5 months, 1 week ago

Ma Foreigner Comrades. Thinking about relocating to live in the Bahamaland? Here are the New Red Shirts Immigration Rules: No need worry, there are No Rules.
You will Not be asked show proof of you being in country, legally.
Best time ever to come if looking to get Bahamaland citizenship.
No need pay attention to immigration Rules and requirements from day you arrive, cause the red shirts government will never ask you questions, nor keep statistically track your movements.
Need help with finding, relocating and paying lodging - the red shirts government has established a special 50 persons Commission for you turn to.
For the asking you will be provided with a list individuals government authorized Notarise ya required documents.
See ya Soon!

{ ***No worry, these Are Not Made Up Rules and even the Shantytowns have Cable and Wireless hookups available ** }

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birdiestrachan 5 months, 1 week ago

The majority that they met have status,. The truth has not been told, and will not be told. Many of them have much more money than many Bahamians. .

The laws of any Country should be for all who live in the Country.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 5 months, 1 week ago

And that great swooshing or sucking sound you hear is the money being swept out of our economy and sent back home to Haiti or Jamaica on a daily basis.

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Safiri 5 months, 1 week ago

When did the issue of Shantytowns become about "status"? I always thought that it was about a series of illegally constructed dwelling places which were in violation of the BUILDING CODES of The Bahamas. We need to focus on the issue at hand and not mix it with other issues. That is why we are in the mess we are in today. Focus Bahamas........FOCUS!

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