The director of an emergency shelter for women says the lack of affordable housing in Charlottetown is a roadblock that is keeping women from healing.

Danya O’Malley, the executive director of P.E.I. Family Violence Prevention Services, which runs Anderson House, said she has seen the length of stay for women seeking shelter increase in recent years from an average of 11 days to 16. She said the longer stays are likely due to the steady loss of other affordable rental options.

“We’re meant to be a place of healing and recovery from trauma and things that sort of shatter the self,” O’Malley said.

“We never really get to do that work as much as we would like in the shelter because we’re so focused on getting people’s basic needs met.”