herald

Tuesday 17 October 2017

45 families lose homes in one month

Mike Allen
Mike Allen

A TOTAL of 45 families became homeless in Dublin last month alone, it has emerged.

It comes as Focus Ireland made a pre-Budget submission to the Government, asking for a €500m investment to deliver 3,000 homes.

The charity said that more than 350 families have become homeless so far this year in Dublin - which means at least 10 children have lost their family home every week in 2014.

"These figures show that the homeless crisis for families is continuing unabated," Mike Allen, Focus Ireland director of advocacy, said.

"Focus Ireland believes that the Government must take action to urgently deliver more family homes - not just more emergency accommodation - if it is to stem this rising flow of families and individuals becoming homeless," he added.

The majority of families who lost their homes were in the private rented sector and couldn't afford their rent as their rent supplement didn't cover it.

Others lost their homes because a bank foreclosed on their landlord.

"We are doing what we can but it's really hard to move them on due to the critical shortage of affordable accommodation so many families are getting stuck as homeless," Mr Allen said.

The charity claimed that Government policy on rent supplement was one of the leading causes of the sharp rise of family homelessness in Ireland.

CRISIS

"The Government could help many families hold on to their homes with a stroke of a pen on Budget Day next week.

"Before the local elections earlier this year the Government accepted that homelessness was at a crisis point but we have yet to see the urgent crisis response that is needed.

"The rent supplement system provides homes for many people but it is also causing some to lose their homes," Mr Allen said.

hnews@herald.ie

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