A spokesperson for the company who most recently managed the Bel Marine residence in Belleville, says major changes are needed to improve tenant care at similar homes.
Vishyal Chityal is the Executive Director for the Niagara based group Supportive Living, a group which owns and/or manages assisted living homes.
Quinte News reached out to Chityal after investigating numerous complaints at homes that Supported Living has managed or is managing.
Media reports have focused on homes similar to Bel Marine, where many residents cannot live on their own. Chityal says tenants may suffer from mental health issues or physical limitations, which require special care.
We asked why so many reports are surfacing about homes they have had contact with, Chityal says Supported Living either seeks them out or is approached to help resurrect such sites.
He says in homes similar to Bel Marine, tenants do not pay a lot of money, therefore it is hard to cover costs at times. He tells us owners of these homes often have razor thin profit margins, which affects the quality of tenant care.
Supported Living has or continues to manage homes throughout the GTA, the Hamilton and Niagara areas.
Chityal says late last year they were approached by the owners of Bel Marine to manage the property for three months. He says their contract ended earlier this year, before notices were posted regarding building code violations
Quinte News had received more than one complaint about the cleanliness of the site and the food the tenants were being served.
Chityal says you have to look at where the complaints are coming from.
He adds that the problems are systematic in nature and when the homes are not financially breaking even, it is difficult to take on major upgrades on the buildings.
One group named on the order is Prime Canadian Properties, the same group which has an order to repair the former Intelligencer building.
He says there is no simple fix when it comes to housing and helping people in need.
The full interview can be heard below.