New figures obtained by Fianna Fáil have revealed a dramatic increase in homelessness in Dublin in less than three months.
The figures were released in response to Council questions submitted by the Fianna Fáil Leader on Dublin City Council Paul McAuliffe. They show that there’s been a 25% increase in the number of families falling homeless since December. There has also been a 10% increase in the numbers using emergency accommodation over that period.
Cllr McAuliffe explained, “During last year an average of 32 new families presented as homeless in the Dublin region every month. The situation has got much worse this year, with 47 families falling homeless in Dublin in January and a further 55 families in February alone. It’s nothing short of alarming.
“The February data for families in emergency accommodation identified that 232 of the homeless families in the Dublin Region were accommodated in commercial hotels on a single night. By comparison in April last year, 184 families were accommodated in such arrangements and in July 2014 it was 147 families.
“This is proof that the homeless crisis is on the increase in Dublin since the Environment Minister Alan Kelly held his ‘emergency summit’ on homelessness in December. It adds to concerns that this was more of a PR exercise than a meaningful action that will make a real difference on the ground.
“There are now 10% more people in emergency accommodation than there was in December and yet there has been little progress in rolling out a house building programme that would increase the supply of social, private rented and owner-occupied homes. Despite promises from the Minister to fund house building in the city the Department of the Environment has yet to transfer any capital funding to allow this building to start.
“It will take far more than just empty rhetoric to begin to tackle what is clearly an escalating homeless crisis in Dublin. As a society, we cannot tolerate a situation where so many families are finding themselves on the streets every single month with no hope of a long-term solution. The housing is simply not there. This needs a major focus from Government to release social housing and start making homes available to help families who are now sleeping rough in Dublin.”