Focus Ireland Marks International Women’s Day By Highlighting A 58% Rise In Number Of Women Homeless In Last 2 Years
Focus Ireland marked International Women’s day by highlighting a shocking 58% increase in the number of women homeless in Ireland in just two years.
The total has shot up from 1,566 in Jan 2016 to 2,462 women homeless in Jan this year. The overall crisis is continuing to deepen with a record 9,104 people now homeless in Ireland.
The charity said the situation would be much worse without the work of Focus Ireland, it reported it helped over 700 families to escape from homelessness last year in partnership with the State.
However, Focus Ireland took the opportunity on International Women’s Day to stress that one very clear and harsh reality of this crisis is the increasing damage being homeless places on women and children.
Focus Ireland Policy Officer Alison Connolly said: “The crisis has continued to deepen and a record number of 9,104 people are now homeless in Ireland. A harsh reality of this crisis is the increasing and terrible burden that being homeless places on women and children.
“Ireland has one of the highest rates of women’s homelessness in Europe, and that figure excludes those residing in domestic violence refuges. We also know that women are more likely to experience ‘hidden homelessness’, staying with friends and family in unsustainable situations and going uncounted in homeless statistics. It is amazing that given these facts there is still no real mention of women in homelessness policy.”
She added: “We must change this. Government housing and homeless policy should acknowledge the specific pressures that affect women and can cause them to become homeless, as well as ensuring women have appropriate supports while experiencing homelessness. A better understanding of the causes of women’s homelessness will contribute to the prevention of homelessness in the first place. Better informed policies would also ensure that when women do become homeless it is for as short a time as possible. We need this for everyone who is homeless. Men, women and children.”
Focus Ireland also repeated its call for a specific family homelessness strategy to be put in place including a cast iron deadline that no family would be homeless for longer than six months. The charity said this six month deadline should apply to all people who are homeless.
Editor’s notes: The latest homeless figures are always available on our website here
Media contact: Alan Neary – 086 468 0442 or Roughan Mac Namara – 086 85 15 117