The Johor State Legislative Assembly was informed that the state transit facility for the homeless, which is being built in Taman Larkin Perdana, Johor Bahru, is likely to be finished by the middle of next year.
The Johor Homeless Transit Centre is being developed by the Johor Bahru City Council (MBJB) at a cost of RM7.64 million, according to state Women, Family and Community Development Committee chairman Zaiton Ismail.
“For the time being, the homeless people are rescued from the streets and accommodated in Anjung Singgah, Yayasan Kebajikan Negara, and at a temporary shelter in Taman Perling,” she said.
She stated that the MBJB, Iskandar Puteri City Council, and the state’s volunteer organisation, Southern Volunteers, are renovating a women’s shelter in Taman Perling to shelter homeless men soon.
“The temporary shelter is expected to be able to accommodate about 200 homeless men,” she said in reply to an oral question on the fifth day of the 14th Johor Dun sitting at the Sultan Ismail Building, Kota Iskandar.
Zaiton stated that the state government would continue to assist the homeless, poor, and vagrants through the Social Welfare Department (JKM) in an effort to promote their well-being.
According to Zaiton, in 2020, JKM carried out 132 operations to assist and rescue homeless individuals, the impoverished, and vagrants. Under Act 183, a total of 110 beggars and vagrants have been rescued, with 86 operations taking place between January and June this year; rescuing a total of 124 persons.
“The beggars and vagrants were subsequently returned to their families, some were placed in JKM facilities and non-governmental organisation’s shelters and given jobs,” she added.
She remarked this in response to a question from Datuk Md Othman Yusof about the state government’s efforts to combat homelessness, which has recently been highlighted by international media.