Local

Residents fight to stop sober house from being built in their community

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Residents at Seabreeze University near Daytona Beach want to stop a sober house from coming to their community.

Resident Igal Cohen said people in his neighborhood don’t want the house on their street.

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“Every single neighbor, every single house is not happy about this,” Cohen said

For years the house on North Peninsula Drive has been a problem for residents.

Now the home is under renovation, and plans are in the works to use the property as a recovery home for people struggling with addiction.

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Many residents feel that turning the house into a sober home will only worsen things.

“20 men in one little house like this, it’s going to be complete chaos,” Cohen said.

Knack’s Place executive director Mark Hall believes making the house into a sober home will have the opposite effect.

“Once this house is open, that’s like 100 beds that we’re going to have. That’s 100 people that aren’t on the streets committing crimes, over-dosing, robing, stealing,” Hall said.

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Cohen and other neighbors have sent letters to the city and even started a petition to try and stop the process.

Because Fair Housing and the Americans with Disabilities Act protect sober homes, there isn’t much the city can do to stop them from being built.

Hall says that once complete, the house must stay up to code and have the proper permits to remain open.

“We want to be working with the city. We want to be compatible with everything needed,” Hall said.

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Matt Reeser

Matt Reeser, WFTV.com

Matt Reeser joined WFTV in 1998 as a news photographer and has worked for television stations in Kentucky and West Virginia.