Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Environment and Local Government Barry Cowen TD says the revelation that Minister Kelly is to provide just 22 modular homes by the end of the year is little comfort for homeless people.
Deputy Cowen pointed out that there were 738 families homeless in Ireland as of September, with the vast majority of these based in Dublin. Minister Kelly has today confirmed that less than 3% of homeless people will be given access to modular homes by the end of the year.
“These modular homes were on public display at the beginning of September. We were told by the Minister at the time that he would use these units to provide immediate relief for homeless people. Nearly two months later we are now finding out that this is far from the truth, with the Minister saying that his “aim” is to provide just 22 units by Christmas.
“Minister Kelly says he “hopes” an additional 100 units will be available to homeless people by February, but there is no guarantee that his target will be met. Just what has the Minister being doing over the last two months? We are in the midst of a housing emergency yet there is no real sense of urgency from the Minister in wanting to provide suitable accommodation for homeless people.
“As opposition Spokesperson I have asked in the Dáil on a number of occasions what specific aspect of the legislation allows the Government to fast track the planning process for these modular homes. However neither the Taoiseach nor the Minister have been able to tell me what legislation they intend on using to achieve this. Fianna Fáil wants to support their efforts, but it seems there is little substance to what they are actually saying,” said Deputy Cowen.