Department for Communities must direct Housing Executive to take on management of Regina Coeli House to secure vital support service for vulnerable women

Unite meet with Legion of Mary to clarify their future role in keeping the hostel open 

Union offers to fund a professional building survey to identify what substantial work is needed, since management committee continue to refuse to share the survey which is being used to justify closure.

On Monday, the ‘work-in’ by hostel staff at Regina Coeli House against its threatened closure enters its fourth week. Since the commencement of the protests at this unique women-only hostel Unite the union has sought a direct meeting with representatives of the Legion of Mary. On Friday [January 28th] the union met with Legion representatives.

Unite General Secretary Sharon Graham welcomed the development and expressed her hopes for a resolution:

The decision by the Legion of Mary to meet with Unite was long overdue. Based on the discussion that took place, Unite considers that if the Department for Communities was to direct the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to make an offer to take on the running of the service that would provide a basis for resolution of the current crisis. Communities’ Minister Deirdre Hargey must now intervene to make this happen as soon as practically possible. 

Unite Regional Secretary Jackie Pollock

Regional Secretary for Unite, Jackie Pollock, said.

Unite once again requested sight of the building survey which is being used to justify the closure of this vital facility. We offered to pay for a second professional survey so that if there were any issues, we could initiate immediate discussions on how to solve them and keep the doors to Regina Coeli House open.

The Legion of Mary representatives were asked to go back to their local body later this week before returning to meet Unite and other community representatives on the concerns raised. In the meantime, trade unionists and the local community continue to support the residents and workers.

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