Shantytown CRACKDOWN underway with census


The government has launched its latest census on shanty town residents this week as part of its crackdown on illegal residential communities, according to Minister of Labour Dion Foulkes.

Foulkes said, the survey is focused on residents of 11 shantytown communities across the country.

“Our intent is to assertion information on how many residents are in the shanty town, their ages, if they have children whether they are in school or not, whether they have any disabilities,” he said.

The government-appointed shanty town committee toured the Farm land, Sand Banks and Mudd in Abaco earlier this year.  The labour minister insisted there were troubling concerns for the areas.

Foulkes revealed earlier this year that there were homes which were being held on a farming lease. He also touched on a number of homes that were not built to code.

One of the concerns involves the makeshift power-generating system. The committee found just three generators on the island of Abaco connected to 20-50 different power lines.

When asked if he had any resistance from some of the residents on the proposed census, Foulkes told Eyewitness News Online that he has already advised 16 members of the Bahamian Haitian Pastors league of his plans and they’ve been cooperative.

As for the residents, Foulkes hesitated, “I’m hopeful that they will be cooperative. It is to everybody’s benefit that this works.”

The census comes in the wake of frequent fires in shantytown communities. The Mudd on Abaco suffered two devastating fires earlier this year.