BERT only hope for housing
There can be no affordable housing unless the island experiences economic recovery and that was why the Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation (BERT) Programme was so important.
This was the view of Member of Parliament for St James South, Sandra Husbands, who was speaking on Tuesday as the House of Assembly debated the vesting of land at Chancery Lane, Christ Church to the National Housing Corporation (NHC).
Using the units in Haynesville, St James, which have electrical problems as an example, Husbands said there was a crisis in housing with the NHC lacking the funds to repair its units or make them comfortable.
Husbands said that is why BERT “is absolutely essential to this nation and is the primary focus of this Government, because if we don’t have economic recovery, we will not have the means to be able to provide the housing and the opportunities for housing for our citizens”.
She said there were approximately 30 000 people on the waiting list and it would cost about $3 billion to provide solutions for all.
Husbands said it meant new approaches and creative solutions were needed, like affordable mortgages and rent-to-own solutions.
The St James South MP added it would take a shift of cultural behaviours to get they to appreciate high rise living as Barbadians put much store in having a “paling” enclosing their yards.