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Sewer backup closes Sudbury youth drop-in program

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A sewer backup at the Sudbury Action Centre for Youth known as SACY has closed the youth drop-in program temporarily.

The centre serves at-risk, vulnerable and homeless young people ages 16-24.

“We are really scared for them. A lot of our clients that we have here because we are low to no barrier (and) they are banned from a lot of the other locations because of behavioural issues or considerations,” said Terry Burden, the interim executive director of SACY.

“So … we have knocked out one of their only pillars of support.”

Officials said the sewer backup closed the overnight shelter for youth for one night but has since reopened using alternative bathrooms.

The non-profit agency now has to pay its $10,000 insurance deductible, at a time when the centre is already struggling financially while serving more clients than ever.

“There have been insufficient increases with inflation that for many of our programs for several years now we are already struggling financially so this particular incident couldn’t have come at a worse time for us,” said Burden.

Officials said the closure of the program has forced the layoff of four staff.

The repairs are expected to take at least six weeks but there are concerns the timeline could be indefinite if issues with asbestos arise.

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