Fianna Fáil has accused the Environment Minister of going into hiding after he ignored repeated requests for a meeting with Dublin City Council over the major shortfall for homeless services in the city.
According to the Fianna Fáil Leader on Dublin City Council Paul McAuliffe, Council officials have issued four requests for an urgent meeting with Minister Kelly over the past 3 weeks. The Minister has failed to respond to any of these requests.
Cllr McAuliffe explained, “We have sought an emergency meeting with the Minister after it emerged earlier this month that Dublin City Council was being left €18.5 million short in funding for homeless services this year. It essentially means that in the last few months of this year, the Council cannot afford to provide emergency accommodation to those who most need it. There is no two ways about it – people will be turfed out onto the streets.
“It is appalling that the Minister is nowhere to be seen while the city is in the grips of a homeless crisis. He has broken his commitment on funding for homeless services in the city and now he has headed for the hills, happy to leave the city and its homeless completely in the lurch.
“I find it extremely difficult to believe that the Minister couldn’t spare an hour out of his day over the past three weeks to meet Dublin Councillors to sort out the issue. The escalating housing crisis in Dublin and the new phenomenon of families becoming homeless in this city at an alarming rate has been clear for some time now. Yet we have seen absolutely nothing from Alan Kelly except press releases with empty promises that he clearly has no intention of keeping.
“Dublin is crying out for leadership and action on the housing crisis. And everyone is wondering: Where is Alan Kelly?”