Focus Ireland calls for immediate action by Government as new figures show a new record total of nearly 4,000 children homeless

Figures published by the Department of Housing today show a total number of 12,827 people officially homeless in September. This is an increase of 136 compared to the previous month and an annual increase of 17% compared to September 2022.

The new figures show that the number of children homeless in Ireland has reached yet another record high, with 3904 children currently without a place to call home, an annual increase of 17%.

Focus Ireland has called for more immediate action by the Government to support these vulnerable children and their families while they are homeless and to provide better access to housing to help more people exit homelessness.

The charity said it is incredible – given the scale of the crisis – that the recent Budget for 2024 has been approved without adequate provisions for children who are homeless, leaving the most vulnerable young lives in a state of insecurity.

Focus Ireland said that the Government failed to deliver on its promise of a ‘Children’s Budget’ as almost 4,000 children who are homeless were overlooked. Ahead of Budget 2024, Focus Ireland called on the Government to ensure that all children who are homeless and require support are allocated a Child Support Worker funded through Tusla. Prior to the Budget announcement Focus Ireland sought funding for 37 additional Child Support Workers who would be able to support over 550 vulnerable children a year.

Focus Ireland CEO Pat Dennigan said: “Child Support Workers work directly with children, to help support them developmentally and emotionally through their journey out of homelessness. We believe that children in emergency accommodation should be supported throughout this time and that every child who needs it should have timely access to a Child Support Worker.”

According to Focus Ireland, the surge in child homelessness can be attributed primarily to the growing difficulty that families face in securing new homes and breaking free from the cycle of homelessness. This reality results not only in an increase in the number of homeless families but also in the prolonged duration of their homelessness.

Mr Dennigan urged the Government to promptly implement measures to assist more families and children in escaping homelessness. He said: “The Government is not using anywhere near enough of the newly available social housing. It is imperative to allocate a more equitable portion of these new housing resources to families and individuals who have been experiencing long-term homelessness. This step is crucial in the ongoing effort to reduce homelessness and provide stable housing solutions for those in need.’’

He added: “The Government must act to prevent further suffering for the nearly 4,000 children homeless. Some do not even have the vital support provided by the likes of our specialist Child Support Workers. We are doing all we can but what these children need is a place to call home.”

The most recent figures reveal that in September 2023, there were 1892 homeless families, marking a significant 23% increase compared to the same month in 2022.


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