Anger at Nazareth House alcohol unit

Published Tuesday, 05 August 2014
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Opposition is growing over plans to convert the former Nazareth House residential home in Londonderry into an alcohol unit.

The proposals will be outlined at a public meeting on Tuesday night but locals in Bishop Street are objecting as there are already three other drink dependency units in the area.

Housing association Oaklee Trinity is planning to turn part of the former home into a 24-bed unit to cater for people with the long-term problems of homelessness and alcohol misuse.

The building backs onto a primary school and faces a grammar school.

Local people have told UTV they are united against the plans, saying there are already enough of these services in the area and they don't want to see any more.

Ivor Doherty said: "Children will see all sorts of behaviour in Bishops Street, they'll see people lying out with drink, we already see that in other streets like John Street and people don't want that."

Linda McKinney said: "We can't cope with another unit in this area, we don't have the capacity, we can't cope and that's what needs to be looked at here."

Nazareth House has a dark past as a children's home, but the nuns have now left and the building is up for sale with Oaklee saying it could potentially provide a home for life for the residents.

However the building hasn't yet been bought and no planning application has been made.

The housing association has said it wants to consult with locals and will explain its proposals during a public meeting, while residents plan to outline their opposition.

© UTV News
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8 Comments
doirecormac in Derry wrote (110 days ago):
@anon, your posting actually shows that you agree that choosing to pour copious amounts of alcohol down your throat is a lifestyle choice. These people , as you say, use alcohol as a coping mechanism to try and mask other things that have happened in their lives. It is a choice they have made. Take a walk around a cancer ward and look at the people there and then ask yourself if choosing to consume alcohol every day can be compared to those people with cancer. Of course not. People do not choose to have illnesses. These people choose to drink. While we have those who pander to them they will never change. Why would they when our social security not only gives them the money to buy drink they actually give them extra money (incapacity benefits, DLA etc) to buy even more drink. Any outsider looking in must think we're mad.
anon in belfast wrote (111 days ago):
I cannot believe the ignorance and totally incorrect comments from some people. who are you to decide what is and isnt an illness??? my god are we living in the dark ages where its decided on the deserving and undeserving?? do a bit of research around the topic and spend some time with these people before you make a totally unjustified comment! yes its understandable that a community has concerns about any new project opening in the area but believe me it is not how you all think. i work in a similiar wet hostel in belfast, it is well managed and attempts to reduce the harm alcohol causes - to be honest the service users are better behaved than the other local residents!! noone can give an opinion on this unless they have lived a persons life, in my experience this "choice" to drink which has resulted in dependency is caused by a range of factors such as bereavement, loss of job, divorce, mental health etc. its stereotypes like these ones that makes it harder for people to receive services... they are humans just like the rest of us. oh and i dont have letters after my name or live in a fancy area - you dont need these to understand or try to understand the difficulties some people face.
doirecormac in Derry wrote (112 days ago):
@Emma - choosing to drink alcohol day and night is not an illness. Cancer is an illness, leukemia is an illness. Drinking until you fall down is not. People make a decision to do it. They could always decide not to do it.
Annon in Derry wrote (112 days ago):
I don't live in the Bishop Street area but i fully agree with the Residents objections and lets get something absolutely clear Alcoholism & Drug Addiction are NOT!!! illnesses they are self inflicted self indulgent addictions and these people more often than not make everyones life a misery around them if you are unfortunate enough to live next to them..Illnesses are things such as Cancer,MS etc that people don't have any control over and never asked for.These Alcoholics are people who so get blind drunk 24 /7 that they barely know their own name,and are way beyond being reasoned with and are paid a fortune in Disability Benefits that enable and enforce their addiction which they spend either pouring down their throats or injecting into their arms The bleeding heart brigade who pander to these people molly coddling and babysitting them and complaining about people marginalising them are usually the very people who have letters after their name live in plush ares and don't have the misfortune to have to live next to them
nic in co ant wrote (112 days ago):
these people deserve q chance. sister conditions/ chuan maire do a wonderful job.Alcoholism is a disease. and you are not allowed to drink or take substances in these facilities or they kick you out. As it is not q hostel rhe schoolkids aren't at risk. Patients are safer here and less risk than wandering the streets.
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