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Minister rules out independent inspection regime for emergency accommodation – Ó Broin

14 July, 2017 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has expressed his disappointment that Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy has ruled out independent inspection regime for emergency accommodation.

The Dublin Mid-West TD said:

“One of the key recommendations contained in the reports published this week by the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission and by Dr Mary Murphy and Dr Rory Hearne of NUI Maynooth was for independent inspections of all emergency accommodation.

“In order to ensure that the highest possible standards are kept, I asked Minister Murphy if he would be at least willing to explore legislation to ensure that family emergency accommodation has some form of independent inspection regime.

 “In the last two years, as the family homelessness crisis has spiralled out of control, I have seen myself some very poor emergency accommodation conditions. Unfortunately, some 70% of families living in emergency accommodation today have been there for more than six months, many of them in inadequate, cramped conditions.

“The Dublin Regional Homeless Executive quality guidelines for emergency accommodation are just guidelines. The best way to ensure that all emergency accommodation is up to standard, including the new family hubs, is to implement an independent inspection regime. For example, the HIQA legislation was amended to grant the body inspection powers for direct provision centres.

“Therefore, I can’t see any compelling argument as to why a similar regime cannot be introduced for all Department of housing funded emergency accommodation. I am disappointed that the Minister doesn’t recognise the necessity or value in having such an independent regime.  I will continue to press for its introduction.” 

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