Minister Cox and MP Dr David Lee view the damage at a resident’s house. (Image courtesy Ministry of Social Development and Family Services)

Minister of Social Development and Family Services, Senator Donna Cox, has given assurances that everything possible is being done to assist the residents of Belview Road, Windsor Park, Claxton Bay, who have been affected by recent landslips in the area.

The Minister visited the six affected families today, Sunday September 19th, along with a Technical Team from the Ministry, including Permanent Secretary Jacqueline Johnson. 

Member of Parliament for Pointe-a-Pierre, Dr David Lee MP, also joined the Minister as she toured the area and saw for herself the extent of the damage done by the recent landslips.  MP Lee said he was happy that Minister Cox took time off on a Sunday to visit the area, noting that it augurs well for the camaraderie in helping the people.

The Minister met with affected resident, Nardera Ramsaran-Williams, who explained that prior to the disaster, she had lived in her home for the past 15 years.  She told the minister she needs a home as soon as possible as her family—including her two children—currently are sleeping in their vehicle.  Another affected resident, Giles Garcia, also expressed his concerns to the Minister.  His home plunged some 300 feet downhill because of the landslip.

Noting the severity of the residents’ situation, Minister Cox said that prior to her arrival, she had spoken with the Minister of Housing and Development to follow up on the request for housing for the affected residents.  The Minister stated in the interim, the six affected families would receive counselling and psychosocial support from the Ministry’s National Family Services Division.

In addition to sharing words of comfort and relief, and empathizing with the families, Minister Cox also offered her support towards their recovery.

“Persons affected also may be eligible to receive assistance under the Ministry’s Rental Assistance Programme. Though this is a temporary measure, this grant is reviewed periodically and can be accessed for up to one year,” the Minister told the residents.

She added: “While Investigations are ongoing with regards to the cause of the landslips, my Ministry will be taking the lead to follow-up on assistance in the shortest timeframe possible.”

Minister Cox also pledged to work with other agencies such as the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development Housing Development Corporation, as well as the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries, to coordinate and follow up on relief efforts to the affected households at Belview Road, Windsor Park, Claxton Bay.