Concern has been raised that there is no oversight and monitoring of Cork’s homeless population, leading a Cork TD to say that it shows “we are telling homeless people we do not value them”.
Sinn Féin’s Thomas Gould has called for a body to be established to monitor the health and well-being of homeless people, as well as to track and record homeless deaths in Cork.
“I asked the Minister for Health the body that was responsible for oversight of homeless deaths in Cork and I am extremely concerned by his reply. Not only is there no body, neither the Department of Health or the Department of Housing track these deaths nationally,” Deputy Gould said.
“I have heard in the last number of months of several people who were homeless passing away in Cork but we have no way of monitoring these figures or finding possible trends that might protect other people in this situation. An investigation needs to be launched immediately into these recent deaths,” he added.
He highlighted as “extremely worrying” recent reports in The Echo of increased risk of sexual assault and violence for homeless people.
“These incidents need to be monitored and trends identified to best protect vulnerable people.
“The government needs to take control of this housing crisis and acknowledge that the impact it is having can be fatal," Deputy Gould said.
“The Dublin Regional Homeless Executive collate these figures for Dublin and we need something similar to be established and funded in Cork.”