Saturday 24 August 2019

Slight drop in homelessness but 'fight must go on against constant worry'


David Carroll, CEO of Depaul. Photo: Photocall
David Carroll, CEO of Depaul. Photo: Photocall

Allison Bray

There was a slight decrease in the number of adults and children who were officially homeless in June, according to latest figures from the Department of Housing.

A total of 10,172 people accessed emergency accommodation in hotels and bed and breakfasts in June, compared with 10,253 in May.

The figures include 6,497 adults and 3,675 children without a permanent roof over their heads, an overall decrease of 81 since May.

However, there was a slight improvement in the number of children with no home of their own last month with a decrease of 74 compared with the previous month.

Yet despite the marginal decrease, David Carroll, interim CEO of the Depaul housing charity, said while the figures are encouraging, they are no cause for celebration.

"It is heartening to see the number of people experiencing homeless decrease for the second consecutive month," he said.

"We must continue to move people out of homelessness and provide them with the right supports to allow them to rebuild their lives."

However, he said the end of the summer holidays and return to school is a particularly grim time for families who are living in emergency accommodation due to the housing crisis.

"The summer months are a time for holidays and fun and to take a break from things. However, for families and individuals living in homelessness there is no break, the struggle and worry is constant," he said.

"I would encourage people to keep a focus on the issue of homelessness and to keep doing all we can to help those most in need."

The figures were released on the same day that protesters gathered at the proposed site of a controversial "co-living" development in Dún Laoghaire yesterday which has been granted planning permission to build 208 studio units despite some critics dismissing them as expensive glorified bed-sits.

Irish Independent

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