Cornwall’s new homeless units ‘shouldn’t include the word trash’

A number of people in Cornwall have raised concerns about the name of the new units being built for the homeless – although it is in fact the name of a brand.

Temporary homes, which are expected to help over 1,000 homeless, are currently under construction in the Cornwall Council parking lot on Treyew Road in Truro.

The accommodation, which is expected to be completed later this month, consists of 18 “Bunkabins” – specially constructed Portacabin-type buildings with basic cooking and shower facilities.

Read more: Plans of retail park with B&M, Iceland, KFC and hotel abandoned to make way for new homes

While praising the new units, a number of people took to CornwallLive’s Facebook page to say their name should not include the word ‘trash’.

However, Bunkabin is the vendor’s brand name for units that can serve a variety of purposes – Cornwall Council did not name them.

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Heather Jobbins wrote: “The name isn’t great. I understand it’s a cabin game but more like a bunk in a trash can.”

Kirsty Guthrie added: “Couldn’t that have been called less degrading? It would be interesting to see how effectively they are used in the county.”

Bridget Whell commented: “It’s good that the accommodation is provided but“… a garbage can. ”It really is not appropriate, although it is better accommodation than a store door. The Psychology offering a trash can is appalling and can’t help build their self-confidence and motivation. Plus, there has to be another plan – that’s not going to help in the medium term, even. “

Bunkabins under construction at New County Hall, Truro

Elaine King wrote: “Could be called Bunkpad or Bunkstop etc. Using the word bin in the name has a negative connotation and these people have enough to deal with. Language is at the forefront of all our biases.”

Bunkabin is a fusion of the words sleeper and cabin.

Overall, people have praised the current hosting program. Similar projects were successful during the pandemic in Truro and Penzance.

Inside one of Cornwall Council's new 'Bunkabin' units which will be used to house single homeless people
Inside one of Cornwall Council’s new ‘Bunkabin’ units which will be used to house single homeless people

The construction of the Bunkabins comes after the council announced in June that it plans to end the use of hotels and short-term accommodation to house those in urgent need of a place to stay.

The New County Hall temporary project is the first of the latest deployment. Other sites should follow the pattern.

Cornwall Council is also in the process of purchasing and renovating over 100 homes for families to use as medium term temporary accommodation.

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