| 5.3°C Dublin

Death in doorway a 'shameful' episode for city, says Mayor

Close

The area where a homeless man was found dead only 50 metres fro the Dail on Molesworth Street, Dublin. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

The area where a homeless man was found dead only 50 metres fro the Dail on Molesworth Street, Dublin. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

The area where a homeless man was found dead only 50 metres fro the Dail on Molesworth Street, Dublin. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

A HOMELESS charity has said that it would not have been able to accommodate Jonathan Corrie, even if he had contacted them, it has emerged.

The death of Mr Corrie, just metres from Leinster House, has provoked an angry response from campaigners against the crisis of homelessness and rough sleeping in the capital.

Sam McGuinness from the Dublin Simon Community said that the charity was familiar with the man, but he would have struggled to find accommodation on Sunday night.

"Even if he wanted to come in, and sometimes he has and sometimes he hasn't, presently, the situation is so serious that we couldn't in any way guarantee him accommodation, because of the situation with emergency accommodation presently," he said.

Mr McGuinness said that a recent survey of rough sleepers on the streets of the capital found 168 people bedded down on November 11.

It was the highest figure ever recorded since the official count began in 2007.

The 2014 winter figure was a 32pc increase on spring of 2014, when there were 127 on the streets and a nearly 21pc increase on the winter 2013 figure of 139.

In the last two years rough sleeping has risen by 93pc, nearly double the count of winter 2012 of 87.

Dublin Lord Mayor Christy Burke said it was "shameful" that a homeless person should die on our city streets.

Dignity

"I told the Taoiseach Enda Kenny in a recent meeting that there would be deaths this winter. I said it to him," Mr Burke told the Herald.

"It is shameful that someone should die on the streets facing our parliament, and I hope it is a wake-up call to our political leaders about the homeless crisis in Dublin," he added.

"My thoughts, my prayers and my sympathies go out to this man's family," Mr Burke said.

"What we need is action on homelessness, not spin and talk. Only action will work," he added.

"With political will this problem can be overcome. Without political action there will be more deaths," he added.

The CEO of the Peter McVerry Trust, Pat Doyle, said that the death of the individual sleeping rough was a tragedy that must not be allowed to happen again.

"This tragic death is a realisation of our worst fears. It is an unfortunate reminder that the chance of dying on the street is a risk that over 160 people sleeping rough face on a nightly basis in Dublin," he said.

Fianna Fail environment spokesperson, Barry Cowen, said that dying on the streets was not a dignified and proper way for anyone to pass away.

"Happening in the shadow of the national parliament, it is a sharp reminder of the scale of the problem we face as a country," he said.

Mr Cowen said that he would raise the issue with Environment Minister Alan Kelly today at a committee meeting.

hnews@herald.ie


Privacy