Executive director of Moncton's largest homeless shelter steps down


Jean Dubé, executive director of House of Nazareth, is stepping down after two years running Moncton's largest homeless shelter.

Dubé has run the organization since the new building on Albert Street was bought and renovated in 2019, but he leaves with many promises unfulfilled.

"There comes a time in life when you have to have to step back and take a look at what you've done, what needs to be done and when it's time to pass the torch," he said.

Plans for the 105 bed were grandiose from the start.

Dubé claimed things would be done "differently" and "we're going to find solutions, we're going to put an end to homelessness.

Dubé said services for mental health and addiction would be offered at the facility, but those didn't materialize.

Moncton city councillor Bryan Butler said the shelter failed to meet the expectations Dubé set up at council.

"You got to help them, it's got to be a recovery and I thought that's what we were getting," he said.

"And I didn't feel that it was."

The House of Nazareth received $25 thousand from the city over three years ending in 2021. Butler said the facility also costs the city money in other ways.

According to Butler, police and emergency services are called to the building almost everyday.

"We have the Humanity Project, we have the Harvest House, the police are not getting the calls every day to there," said Butler.

"So, you know, there's something lacking."

Butler said if the shelter was better staffed, issues could be "handled from within." 

And Dubé is the first to admit, keeping staff has been a problem especially since the COVID pandemic began.

He said he lost about half his staff after the pandemic shut downs started, and at $15 an hour, he said wages are too low for the work his employees have to do.

"I think these people deserve a lot more," said Dubé.