THE Romero Centre for refugees in Brisbane is facing being left homeless after losing a bid to delay eviction.
The centre’s clients, most of them Temporary Protection Visa (TPV) holders, will be unable to access its services when the centre vacates its O’Keefe St, Buranda premises on July 17, with nowhere to go until alternative premises are ready.
The centre is auspiced by the Brisbane Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy, through Mercy Family Services and supported by the Franciscan Friars, the Quakers, All Hallows’ School, the Uniting Church at Indooroopilly and other groups.
Centre co-ordinator Dermot Dorgan said negotiations had been underway since the end of last year to find another suitable location when their landlord informed them they would have to move.
He said the official notice to quit the premises was received in February with a May 6 deadline.
“It’s been extremely difficult to find a place, because we really need to stay in this area and houses are at a premium,” Mr Dorgan said.
He said in light of the centre’s problems, the landlord had previously granted an extension to the end of June.
“I’m not sure why they want us to leave right now. But they have said it is due to the site being resumed for a new busway,” Mr Dorgan said.
The Romero Centre was set to move into a building in Park Rd, Woolloongabba that is currently occupied by a torture and trauma counselling service but was still waiting for refurbishment of the new premises, he said.
The centre caters for about 50-60 clients a week, mostly from Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran.