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3 families booted from homes in 4 days

Dr. Sylvia Simmons (File photo)

Dr. Sylvia Simmons (File photo)

Hours after rushing to the assistance of a family of five that was ejected from a rented property yesterday, Executive Director of the Family Support Network (FSN) Dr Sylvia Simmons told BVI News Online she is concerned about the number of families thrown out of homes in less than a week.

“Since last week Thursday, we’ve had to provide emergency housing for a family of three, then a family of two, and now a family of five. Two of those cases were landlord situations. In the other case, the husband decided that he is not going to do what’s right by his wife and his children, and so he decided that they need to find shelter elsewhere,” she said.

Dr Simmons said she is not aware of all details regarding the family of five, but she said further checks will be made into the matter.

She added that the police appear to also have an interest in the matter.

“We were able to accommodate the family for the night; we are going to assist further to assess exactly what happened. The matter, based on my understanding, is being investigated also by the police who have required for them to come into Family and Juvenile to find out exactly what happened, because it sounds like the matter could be a criminal matter.”

“We [at FSN] deal with domestic violence matters by the way. We helped to accommodate [the family] for last night because of the circumstances involved. If we do get some financial support for that family, that money would go towards them so they can provide some shelter for a period so they can get back on their feet,” Dr Simmons further told BVI News Online.

The matter involving the family of five first came to public attention through the BVI Community Facebook page yesterday when a resident using the name Art Henry posted: “Good night, there’s a family of five (three children 12,13,14) and a mom and dad that were put out tonight by their landlord and have no place to sleep. I do not know them personally, but I’m asking if anyone knows of any organization that would be able to assist them for at least tonight.”

FSN, along with some residents, immediately responded and helped the family.

Clueless about their rights

Dr Simmons, in the meantime, told BVI News Online that she is concerned about the number of married women being cast out of their homes apparently because they are clueless about their rights.

“A lot of women are clueless as to what their rights are. whether you are a BVIslander or not, there are some basic rights that you have, and very often people do violate them because the victim is very ignorant as to what is their right,” she added.

“The reality is that, especially in matrimonial homes, a lot of women who are the victims are the ones who are unaware that he can’t put you out. It happens quite often because a lot of women don’t know what their rights are when it comes to marital understanding,” Dr Simmons further told BVI News Online.

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18 Comments

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  1. what gone wrong in this country says:

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 14

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

  2. Yaow says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 48 Thumb down 18

    On the community board whenever there is an issue with the treatment of dogs, cats and even snakes there is quick, fluent, very outspoken response from certain members of our community but when a human being needed assistance they were fast asleep.

    If a dog needed a home last night at the same time they would have even chartered a flight to pick up the dog and give it a home.

    It’s a shame they complain about the treatment of animals everyday but stay silent about the killings and everything else that is affecting the lives of people. The community board should change its name to BVIPETA.

    • Scary Mary says:

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 31 Thumb down 31

      Nonsense!

      Many of the regulars on the community board do an awful lot for the community at large.

      If some of them tried to intercede with a “family matter”, they would be told to mind their own business, simply because of the colour of their skin or where they are from.

      As a result, most have learned to stay silent on sensitive topics, but they help in the background, SILENTLY and frequently with no thanks at all.

      I have a good friend who is currently staying with one of “those people” on the BVI community board.

      We didn’t have space for her (as we had family visiting over the holidays) so another friend took her in and she has been feeding and sheltering her from an abusive boyfriend for the past 3 weeks.

      Generalizations are what small minded people look for whenever it suits their biased and often racist purposes.

      • Yaow says:

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 4

        You seem to be straying a little off topic with your insinuations however how is it ok to talk openly about how BVI people mistreat animals but then remain silent about everything else.

        One of them told Hon Andrew Fahie to “become human” after he was falsely accused of leaving a whining puppy outside his house.

        Once you live here you have a right to speak about any issue that affects the BVI not just the well being of animals.

      • ENFORCEMENT IS KEY says:

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

        @Scary Mary

        Totally – this woman completely off base much of the time.

    • JayMee says:

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

      It’s possible that people chose to send the poster a private message instead to protect the identity of the family. Just a thought.

  3. Legend says:

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 27 Thumb down 1

    Give up the $900. phone with data plan, the new car and the hairdresser every weekend. Then and only then things will improve.

  4. Advice says:

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 12

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    • ALawyer says:

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

      A husband cannot put his wife out*, as they are married she would have an equitable interest to the property, meaning that the property is just as much hers as it is his (even if her name is not officially on the deed.(They will have to come to a settlement if they decide to divorce).

      And for the landlord, he would have to give the tenant sufficient notice.

    • Squatter says:

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 2

      @Advice

      You sound like that is your ways and means to get free housing.

      But be very careful about whose apartment you squatting in, because times are also hard for the landlords too.

      They have mortgages to pay and families to feed just like you do. Put the wrong one in a bad situation, you could end up a DEAD squatter. So don’t push the wrong button. Everybody feeling pain.

      Landlords already went through enough with these thiefing contractors and everyone has a breaking point.

      It sounds to me like a lot of tenants these days are not looking for housing that they can afford, but instead want the best apartments and then refusing to pay. It does not work so.

      Like Lady Joyce sang, don’t hang your hat where your hand can’t reach it. If you can’t pay get out the people place.

      You expect to cock up free for months without paying. You and them must be in partnership.

    • Just saying says:

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

      This is under renting agreement, there is no squatters right in this situation. If this was so it does not make sense to have apartments as a business.

  5. Willy Nilly says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    This woman always come willy nilly, gettin her nose in things other than her role. Husbands and wives are both affected equally.

    Not all reasons are abuse and not all reasons are the result of a man’s abuse.

    Anyone can be put out of a rental home for various reasons, and all very valid reasons.

    If she want more protection then use legislation, which will require add’l public funds to legislate and then enforce and then support.

    The BVI does not tax for the support mechanisms she is trying to imply.

  6. @Advice says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Are you crazy, you can’t rent someone place and claim squatter’s right, if that was the case people would have acquired free house and apartment all over the island.

  7. Just Saying says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

    It is rare to find affordable housing in the Virgin Islands, most apartment are priced way higher than most people can afford, they take expensive apartment because they have no choice, they need to live somewhere.

    The affordable ones, when the tenant moving out they done tell someone about it, so those that advertise are those that are expensive.

  8. Lol says:

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

  9. Hmmm says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    @Willy Nilly You are quite right. She needs to think before coming on here chatting piss. She is obviously looking attention.

  10. Help your own says:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    Is this enough to bring in them Trailer Houses I read about last year?

    It would be an start to a better future for those who struggling and cant afford to pay these high rental prices these Landlord asking for and if we cant pay for them, then plenty of us are in trouble here in the B.V.I.

    We need to take care of our own people before we can take care of the outsiders. I agree that the country needs money to do things but our own people here are suffering everyday don’t know where to cry for help.

    so again I do ask for the Government to please consider start building these trailer homes and rent them at a fair prices to person.. there are places to put them.. suggesting to use the crown land that they have around the place.. Ijs….

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