Cork's homeless crisis has eased in the last month

Cork's homeless crisis has eased in the last month
A homeless person sleeping rough on the streets of Cork.

Those working on the front lines of Cork's homelessness crisis say they are heartened by new statistics revealing a 10% reduction in the amount of people accessing private emergency accommodation such as rooms in hotels and B&Bs.

Paul Sheehan, from the Cork Simon Community, said the statistic is an uplifting one, which shows that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

“The decrease is most welcome and we hope that it is the start of an ongoing downward trend,” he said.

“I'd be very hopeful that this means we could be beginning to see the results of Minister Simon Coveney's strategic Rebuilding Ireland plan to tackle the housing and homelessness crisis.” 

When asked about the figures, Minister Coveney said he had noted the reduction in the number of Cork families and individuals who no longer need to access emergency accommodation and have moved onto more sustainable accommodation.

"I expect to see further reductions in the next two months as we move towards the ambitious target to deliver on the Government's commitment to only use hotels and B&Bs facilities as emergency accommodation for families in exceptional circumstances," he said.

"At the moment a supported family facility capable of accommodating 21 families is being progressed and I look forward to it opening in the coming months."

According to the latest figures from the Government's Housing Department there were 278 adults in emergency accommodation in Cork at the end of last month. 

This is an overall decrease of 6% when compared to the figures for March of this year.

“However, the decrease in April can be attributed to fewer people in private emergency accommodation - hotels and B&Bs,” said Mr Sheehan.

“In the south west, the number of people in standard emergency accommodation - emergency shelters - remains steady... but the number of people in private emergency accommodation in April 2017 fell by 10% compared to March 2017."

While this statistic is a positive one, the level of homelessness which currently exists in Cork and, indeed, Ireland, still makes for stark reading.

In fact, latest figures from the Government's Housing Department show the number of adults in emergency accommodation in Cork has risen by more than 40% in the last two years alone.

There were 278 adults in emergency accommodation here at the end of last month. This represents an increase of 28% compared to the same period in April last year, and an increase of 46% when compared to the same period in April of 2015.

More in this section

Sponsored Content