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St Patrick’s Day hotel demand impacting on homeless families – Crowe

12 March, 2017 - by Seán Crowe TD

Dublin South West TD Seán Crowe has said that the upsurge in demand for hotel accommodation by people travelling to Ireland for the St Patrick’s Day celebrations are having a negative knock-on effect on homeless families who rely on hotels and other B&B accommodation.

The Sinn Féin TD said the crisis, particularly in the Dublin area, is becoming more acute, with families being asked in some cases to vacate for other guests in the run up to the holiday weekend.

Deputy Seán Crowe said:

“The Dublin Regional Homeless Executive released figures this week that show 60% of homeless families in the Dublin area have been in emergency accommodation for more than six months, while 40% of families have been in hotels, B&Bs, or hostels for over one year. Disgracefully, 138 families have spent more than 18 months in emergency accommodation.

“We know that many of these families are living in inappropriate, unsuitable, and insecure accommodation but it’s the only alternative they have to living on the street.

“Families have been in contact with my constituency office saying that they are being told to vacate their rooms in the run up to the St Patrick’s weekend and have literally nowhere to go.

“A weekend that should be a positive celebration of Irishness will now unfortunately have a negative impact on the homelessness situation.”

Crowe continued:

“I have no doubt that many infrequent visitors to Ireland, and Dublin in particular, will be shocked by the amount of homeless people living on the streets.

“There is clearly a crisis in housing and special weekends, concerts, or events put additional pressure on accommodation. The Government are either indifferent or unaware of the extent of the crisis and appear to be content on letting the crisis get worse and worse.

“Homeless families are facing into St Patrick’s weekend with nowhere to stay or go for that weekend. There is no emergency plan, no emergency measures, and no solutions coming from the Government as they head off to other parts of the globe.

“Surely, one measure the Government could adopt are the recommendations made by both the Simon Community and the Peter McVerry Trust this week on returning vacant homes to public use.” 

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