Homeless people in Cork are living in tents across the city

Homeless people in Cork are living in tents across the city

Gardaí and the Simon Community said they are aware of a number of people living in tents across Cork city as the homelessness crisis continues.

The Evening Echo is aware of three separate tents pitched around the city centre that are being lived in by people who cannot find accommodation.

Cork Simon Campaigns and Communications manager Paul Sheahan said the bottom line is their emergency accommodation is full.

“Our outreach team is aware of these individuals and had made contact, but there basically isn’t a bed for them at the moment.”

“We have 51/52 people staying with us on average and that is overflowing. We are pretty sure other emergency accommodation is full also, so that is definitely a large contributing factor.

Mr Sheahan said his advice to anyone sleeping in a tent on a regular basis was to get in contact with the outreach team or the rough sleeper service. “That is their first port of call.” 

Mr Sheahan said it was not an ideal situation to be staying in a tent, even in the mild weather we are currently experiencing.

“It offers very basic shelter from the elements. It doesn’t have the facilities you need for washing, showering or cooking and also it is likely these tents are pitched in a secluded spot which brings safety and security concerns also.” 

Census homeless figures released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show the number of people sleeping rough in Cork and Kerry jumped from 301 in 2011 to 471 in 2016.

The 2016 figures consist of 285 males and 186 females.

Nationally, more than 760 children aged four or younger were recorded as homeless on Census night.

According to the CSO, there were 6,906 homeless persons counted in Census 2016, with an average age of 31.

“We are in the midst of a very serious housing crisis," Mr Sheahan said.

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