Focus repeats its call for Govt to develop a specific sub-strategy to end family homelessness as number of children passes 3,000 for the first time
Focus Ireland welcomed the drop in the number of homeless families in Dublin indicated in the new government figures issued today.
However, the charity warned that the crisis is still deepening as family homelessness rises outside of Dublin and the total number of people homeless nationwide hit a new record total of 8,270.
The reduction in the number of families homeless in Dublin is a tribute to the work of the Focus Ireland family services, the Dublin Region Homeless Executive and other voluntary organisations working with the families.
Focus Ireland family services, which is funded by the DRHE, supported a total of 47 families to secure a home in August and move on from being homeless – one of the most successful months on record.
Focus Ireland also stressed that while August’s fall in family homelessness in Dublin (reduction of 32) was very welcome, the overall trend shows a steady increase of 15% in the number of families homeless in the last 12 months in the capital.
Focus Ireland Advocacy Director Mike Allen said: “It is great news for every single family that we support to secure home through our work with DRHE, DCC and the Government as it gives them the stability of a home.
However, the fact that the number of families homeless nationwide has hit a record total shows the crisis is also spreading more around the country shows the nightmare of homelessness is still very much a reality for a rising number of families and children.”
Mr. Allen added: “As Minister Murphy and his department are soon to conclude the review of Rebuilding Ireland we hope that these figures act as a firm reminder of the necessity of the Minister developing a clear family homelessness sub-strategy to help end this crisis as Focus Ireland has called for on a number of occasions.
This sub-strategy must include effective measures to prevent families becoming homeless and a cast-iron deadline that no family remains homeless for longer than six months.”
He added: “If there is not a clear deadline in place too many children and families will remain trapped in homelessness – be it in hotels or family hubs – for far too long. They need homes not more emergency accommodation.”
Focus Ireland said there must be firm action taken in the coming Budget – which is on World Homelessness Day on Oct 10th – to fast-track delivery of social housing and also more steps to increase prevention for families and people at risk of losing their homes.
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Media contacts: Roughan MacNamara: 0868515117 or Alan Neary: 0864680442.