Government’s Winter Plan to end: more than 70 children at risk of being on streets
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    Government’s Winter Plan to end: more than 70 children at risk of being on streets

    © Belga
    The Minors in Exile Platform argues for the implementation of a permanent solution, regardless of residence status.
    © Belga

    At least 70 children risk being left on the streets of Brussels at the end of April. The problem will arise as the winter reception centres managed by Samusocial and the consortium Red Cross/Médecins du Monde/CAW Brussels (a homeless association) will then close. The Minors in Exile Platform is warning of this. The information has been confirmed by the Red Cross, which is however stating that the various associations are seeking an appropriate solution.

    The temporary reception centres, where the homeless can find refuge during the winter months, are preparing to close on April 30th. These centres are currently accommodating several families with children. Such families are at risk of being left homeless on the streets.

    The Minors in Exile Platform is consequently arguing for the implementation of a “permanent solution”. Emergency shelters should thus be accessible throughout the year, “independently of an individual’s residence status”, the association stresses. Moreover, it is necessary it adds to find “a structural solution throughout the year which is tailored to individual needs, and ensures quality support for families with children.”

    A spokesperson from Red Cross Belgium has confirmed that the reception centre, which it manages in Haren in partnership with the NGO Médecins du Monde and CAW Brussels, will close at the end of April. However, the various stakeholder associations are striving to find a solution.

    Christopher Vincent
    The Brussels Times