A YOUNG boy’s first day at school was ruined after a local authority attempted to remove his family from a hotel they had been placed in as emergency accommodation.
Four-year-old Roman Fallon attended his first day at St Mary’s school on Dorset Street yesterday morning, on what should have been a memorable occasion.
However, the day was overshadowed when Fingal County Council informed the family that they were to vacate the north inner city hotel.
“It should have been the happiest day of our son’s life so far, but instead it was ruined when Fingal County Council told us that we had to leave the hotel the previous night,” Roman’s father Marcus (25) told the Herald.
“Our child was heading off for his big day, but he was basically going to return to not even having a place to stay for the night.
“Other children would have been going home to a place to stay, but Roman was returning home to nothing. Our lives have been going downhill for a while and this really made things worse,” he added.
Marcus, his partner Nicole Mallon (25) and their two children, Roman and Lucas (14 months), have been living in emergency accommodation since February.
The family moved back to Dublin, having previously lived in Kilkenny for some time, and were forced to live in emergency accommodation after Marcus lost his job.
“It’s been a heartbreaking number of months for our family. Nicole unfortunately had a miscarriage earlier this year, so it’s been a traumatic time to say the least,” Marcus said.
“One thing we had to look forward to was Roman’s first day at school, but that was also ruined when we were told to leave the hotel.
“Something has to be done about the situation because it is ruining families.
“I had to leave Nicole and the two children earlier this year and find alternative accommodation because of the living situation we were forced into, it’s just not right.”
Marcus also stated that the hotel in question had been “very accommodating” and that the staff there have “gone out of their way” to look after him, Nicole and their two young children.
A spokesperson for Fingal County Council confirmed that the family were notified that they had to leave their current accommodation.
However, following an investigation yesterday evening into the young couple’s predicament, they were allowed to stay.
“The family in question were asked to leave. However, following an investigation they were allowed to remain,” said the spokesperson for Fingal County Council.
“Accordingly, there is no requirement for alternative accommodation as the family can remain at the [hotel]. They have been advised of this.”
Although the situation has been clarified for the time being, Marcus said that there was no certainty as to what lies ahead.
“We’re just living day by day at this stage, waiting for another call saying we have to move on,” he said.
“This country’s money is being spent indiscriminately and there’s hundreds of families in our situation.
“It’s like one step forward and two steps back.”