Government under fire after latest homeless death on city streets: 'So many people are affected by this'

Government under fire after latest homeless death on city streets: 'So many people are affected by this'
Lower Oliver Plunkett Street.Source Google Maps.

THE Government has been accused of ignoring the most vulnerable in society after another homeless man died on the city's streets today.

The man in his late 20s was found dead on lower Oliver Plunkett Street at lunchtime.

He is the fourth homeless person to die on the streets of Cork in the last four months.

A Garda spokesperson said that the body was discovered at around 1.30pm, following a report from a member of the public.

The death is not being treated as suspicious and the man was known to homeless services in the city.

Caitriona Twomey of Cork Penny Dinners
Caitriona Twomey of Cork Penny Dinners

Cork Penny Dinners coordinator Caitriona Twomey described the deaths of homeless people as a grave injustice.

She said the Government needs to realise that these are real people suffering.

“It is sad news,” Catriona said.

“There is a family hurting today. So many people are affected by this situation.” 

The charity volunteer said she felt frustrated that more was not being done by Government to bolster support services, such as Penny Dinners and Cork Simon. 

Ms Twomey said volunteers working at the coalface of the homeless crisis have told the government that more resources are needed.

“We outlined what needs to be done and no one is taking notice. The support services are stretched. They need more funding, bodies and hours. Mental health services need to be expanded.”

Ms Twomey said that the Government needs to pull up their socks.

“They have the power, funding, and authority to make changes. The buck stops with them.

“They are being told what is needed by the frontline staff and the people affected.”

She emphasised that homeless people neep help to turn their life around.

“They don’t want this life. At the moment, the Government is pushing people from pillar to post. They need to work with homeless people, it is backward they are going.

“They need to sit down and listen.

“We need to get some commitment and conviction from the Government.”

A memorial service has been organised by Penny Dinners for Monday evening at the North Cathedral.

The service is for “all who have died on our streets, died through addictions, died through suicide and to all who have died lonely.”

The Lord Mayor John Sheehan will be attending the ceremony and the High Hopes Choir will sing at the service.

Ms Twomey said it will be songs that resonate with people.

“There is an open invitation to everyone to attend and show their respect for those who have died on the streets,” Ms Twomey said.

The memorial service will take place at 7pm at the North Cathedral on Monday.

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