Housing crisis continues to worsen and number of homeless children rising

The Simon Community has said the number of people entering emergency accommodation continues to grow month after month in Ireland.

The charity has released a new report this morning, titled “Homeless and Housing Crisis Fact File,” which highlights the pressing issues that need to be addressed to ease the current housing crises.

It focuses on the growing number of people in emergency accommodation, the inadequacies of the rent supplement system and the shortage of housing in the private rented sector.

At the moment 6,000 people are in emergency accommodation, including almost 2,000 children.

Niamh Randall from Simon said tenants needed greater protection from vulture funds, that rents here have risen by over 30% and the supply of rental properties has fallen by over 70% since 2012. She said:

“What we know is that being in emergency accommodation and experiencing homelessness is hugely traumatic and stressful, so we need to limit that as much as we can.

“We know that building housing takes time, so we need to look at new ways of increasing supply.
“Addressing the housing and homeless crisis must be the top priority of the next government.”

The charity also found that the number of mortgages in arrears for more than 90 days is climbing with a figure of 70% (61,931) representing the amount of mortgage holders in serious arrears of over three months.

It says a total of more than 13,000 social housing units were delivered in 2015 with only 28 houses actually being built.

The report says the number of new private residential properties completed in 2015 was 12,666, compared to 93,419 houses in 2006.

The report concludes by saying:

“Our Fact-file clearly demonstrates the pressures on all parts of the housing market yet Ireland’s approach to the housing market is completely disconnected; home ownership, the private rented sector, social housing and homelessness are approached in isolation when in fact they are all interconnected.”

The full report “Homelessness and Housing Crisis Fact File” can be read by clicking here

 

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Padraig Conlon
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