Focus Ireland said that the Government must do a lot more in 2020 to end the deepening homelessness crisis as new figures today report a total of 10,448 homeless in November. This is a slight decrease of 66 people homeless from the record total of 10,514 people homeless in October, however, the total number of people homeless has now been over 10,000 for the 10th consecutive month.
Focus Ireland said that while much good work is being done, and particularly welcomed the decrease in child homelessness by 74 children from last month, there are still 3,752 children homeless (1,685 families) according to the new figures from the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government. The latest figures show the Government has still failed to take a number of vital measures required to ease the crisis of adult homelessness, with the new figures revealing 6,696 adults homeless in November, an increase of 8 from October when it was 6,688.
Focus Ireland CEO Pat Dennigan said:
“As we begin 2020, nearly 4,000 children in Ireland will be starting the year in emergency accommodation and there has been a further increase in the number of adults entering emergency accommodation. These figures confirm that the housing and homelessness crisis will dominate the 2020 election, with voters asking hard questions about the policies that the parties will be presenting.
Homelessness causes terrible trauma to any person who suffers it but it is hurting our children the most. We are seeing this through our own work supporting these families. Babies are living in tiny hotel rooms where they don’t even have enough room to learn how to crawl properly. Our family team is working hard to support these children but no family should ever have to go through the painful experience of seeing their children suffering as they have no place to call home. The crisis is also spreading nationwide as nearly 500 families and 1,000 children are now homeless outside of Dublin.”
“We must always remember that we can end homelessness. Focus Ireland has helped over 1,200 families to secure a home and leave homeless behind in the last two years. This has been achieved by the combined hard work of staff in Focus Ireland in partnership with the State and through the great support of our donors and supporters. This work shows it is possible to end – & prevent – homelessness but much more needs to be done as we start this new year. We need far greater action in 2020 and the Government must lead the way and Fianna Fail and all parties must play their part.”
Focus Ireland has once again repeated its call for the Government to put in place a specific family homelessness strategy alongside a cast-iron deadline to ensure no family or individual remains homeless for longer than six months.
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