Each week we will post a summary of interesting and representative 211 calls. This week, we have connections from New Brunswick and Manitoba.
Some issues can wait, but when someone urgently needs a place to stay for the night, they need help right away. 211 can be reached 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for help in situations like these. Service Navigators can assist people to access shelter, meals and other basic needs that cannot wait.
A 211 Service Navigator took a call from a young adult male who had recently become homeless in the City of Saint John. He was wondering where he could spend the night. He did not want to stay on the streets, especially during the winter.
The Service Navigator rephrased what the caller said to ensure she understood exactly what he wanted. She also probed for more information to help him better. She asked his age to ensure that she found him the right type of shelter. She found out that he was old enough to stay in a shelter for adult men. She also found out exactly where he was in the city, so that she could find a place that he could easily access.
She referred him to a nearby shelter, and gave him the address and the phone number for the shelter. She asked him if he would need assistance in calling the shelter – she could make a three-way call. He said that he was able to call the shelter himself, and would do so right away. She encouraged him to call 211 again anytime if he needed more assistance.
Small landlords can face surprising difficulties when renting out a home. 211 Service Navigators can let them know where to find out information about their legal rights and responsibilities as landlords.
A man called 211 looking for information about his rights as a small landlord. He had tenants living in a home that he owned who were refusing him entry despite his having given proper advance notice. This was impairing his ability to keep the home well-maintained and in good repair, which was his responsibility as a landlord.
The tenants were also breaking their lease agreement by letting trash pile up in the backyard of the home. Not only was this an eyesore, but it could have potential public health ramifications such as attracting vermin, such as rats. He was very concerned about the situation and wanted to avoid escalating maintenance and sanitation issues at the home. He needed to find reliable information on his rights as a landlord.
The 211 Service Navigator let him know about the Residential Tenancies Act, and that the Act lays out the rights and responsibilities of both landlords and tenants. The Service Navigator told him how to find the Act online. He also referred the landlord to the Residential Tenancy Branch, which oversees the enforcement of the Residential Tenancies Act, for more information on his rights and how to enforce them..