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2 year delay in Publication of Homelessness Report totally unacceptable

17 October, 2006

Sinn Féin Housing Spokesperson, West Belfast MLA Fra McCann has said that the two year delay in the publication of a Homelessness Report is totally unacceptable and called for the immediate publication of the report entitled, ‘Promoting the Social Inclusion of Homeless People: Addressing the Causes and Effects of Homelessness in NI’.

Mr McCann said:

“This report was due to be published at the end of 2004. It is now almost two years overdue. Yet, the most recent figures tell us that over 20,000 people are now homeless. This situation cannot go on. It is totally unacceptable that government departments are sitting on this vital report that would allow us to put in place and deliver a cross departmental strategy to tackle this growing crisis.

“I met with David Hanson 6 months ago and again 2 months ago and was assured that this report would be published without delay. Yet, two years on we are still waiting for the publication of this report and the development of an effective strategy.

“Across the range of housing organisation and among those working to try and tackle homelessness there is deep frustration at the apparent lack of urgency in publishing this report.

“There is can be no excuses for this delay because with each delay and each excuse the problem only gets worse. We need a comprehensive cross-department strategy for helping people avoid homelessness and for tackling the problem when it occurs.” ENDS

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