It has recently come to the attention of the community that the toilets and showers at the Eagleby Wetlands were closed and locked leaving many who sleep rough the lack of these basic services.

Homeless and housing services in Logan and across the state are left to local charities to help those in need with food, clothes and finding suitable temporary accommodation. Many Logan organisations help people daily, although the housing crisis is putting more people in tough position.

Major services are the state governments responsibility and while they are now building more houses and buying old facilities to convert into housing, they have been lagging in sorting the issue for years.

The showers that are in the Wetlands location are for people with disabilities who use the nearby community facilities. Due to the homeless population that frequent the area, the caretaker kindly allowed the homeless to use them as well.

Word got out on social media that these facilities were there and able to be used by all at no cost, and campers and backpackers caught wind and the showers started being misused and were closed. Reports from the caretaker that faeces was spread all over the walls meant no one could use them and were subsequently closed.

The toilets are open for the entire community with sinks that have drinkable water. With not a lot of clear information coming out, Mayor Jon Raven has been trying to clear the air.

Mayor Jon Raven has made comments to 7News and recently has reached out on social media with a response to the comments.

“The toilets are open and there is water available,” Mayor Raven posted.

“So, people’s ability to access water and a toilet hasn’t been taken away. I know a lot of comments were concerned about this, so I wanted to make that clear.

“The water was turned off for a couple of days a little while ago because people had been doing their dishes and laundry and the drains had gotten clogged with grease and other objects that aren’t meant to go down there. Once the drains were cleared the water was turned back on.”

Logan City Mayor Jon Raven
Logan City Mayor Jon Raven

Council acted upon the blocked facilities in an urgent manner to ensure they were open as families also use these facilities when visiting the wetlands and when sport is taking place across the road.

“The showers were locked for a couple of reasons,” Mayor Raven continued.

“The first is because they were getting damaged regularly and used incorrectly. The people who these showers are for (a disability group that needs them in case of accidents), were unable use them to due to the showers either being out of order or in a disgusting state (used as toilets with faeces everywhere).

“The second is that some people who have been staying in this park have recently started creating antisocial issues. These include public drinking, drug use, aggressive behaviour and camping very close to where children play weekend sport and train during the week.

“This was making families feel like the park wasn’t safe for children to use. When that starts happening council can’t turn a blind eye.

“Another issue is that these showers were advertised on social media as being the only free showers between Brisbane and the GC. So, backpackers and campers who are not homeless and have nothing to do with Logan have been using the facilities as well.

“This has brought in many people who aren’t local and don’t care about our community or the facility and has seen a significant increase in complaints from people who live nearby and use the park.”

Mayor Raven also said that there is significant funding and energy being put into homelessness by the State Government – but they rely on the organisations they’re funding to deliver the services on the ground – as do we.

“However, homelessness is complex,” posted Mayor Raven.

“Not all people who are sleeping rough are ready to transition into housing for a variety of reasons. The best way to support people in this situation is by connecting them to the services who can provide support for their mental and physical health and housing needs.

“I’m going to meet with these funded homelessness organisations in the coming weeks to ask what they’re doing to support the people at Oliver Sports Park (Eagleby Wetlands).

“Our parks shouldn’t be places that families are scared to take their children. Funding is being provided to organisations who are meant to be help and I want to understand how they’re using that funding to make a difference.”

Unlike previous Mayor’s of Logan, Jon has asked for anyone to email him directly if anyone has questions regarding this issue.

“I hope that information is helpful, if you have more questions, please email me directly at jonraven@logan.qld.gov.au.”

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