One in four people in Ireland are affected by homelessness, either touching the lives of themselves, family, friends or acquaintances, according to a Red C poll conducted by the Simon Community.
Those who know someone experiencing hidden homelessness said they mostly tend to describe the situation as being “unintended” and “without a clear leaving date”.
The findings also suggest that 18-34 year olds are significantly more likely to report an experience of hidden homelessness themselves, which contrasts with 55-year-olds and over, who in the poll, did not record the experience at all.
Perhaps more worrying is the higher level of uncertainty amongst those classified as lower social grades (5 per cent higher) as to when the situation will end for those affected.
Wayne Stanley, Head of Policy and Communications at the Simon Communities of Ireland, said:
“We know from local and international research that the majority of the 10,500 people in homeless emergency accommodation in Ireland will have had an experience of hidden homelessness.
“The scale of the challenge to address homelessness reflected in the findings of this poll should give pause to the Government. We need to examine the way that the crisis is being addressed and find ways to move forward more quickly.
“At our conference tomorrow, we will set out in more detail our belief that vacancy levels in Ireland provide an opportunity to make progress.”