Homelessness becoming normal as no effort to end it in sight

Posted on Friday, 29 October 2021
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Housing for All commits to “working towards” eliminating homelessness by 2030 while simultaneously committing to increase resources for emergency homeless accommodation. A commitment to actually ending homelessness and an increase in funding to actively prevent it would have been far better.

Budget 2022 commits €194 million to the delivery of homeless services, for the provision of emergency accommodation, other services homeless households may require and the supports needed to exit homelessness as quickly as possible. No mention is made in Budget 2022 of any prevention measures.  A further €10 million in Covid-19 funding is earmarked in Budget 2022 to consolidate improvements in health services for people who are homeless. €6 million has been allocated to the expansion of the Housing First programme under the National Drugs strategy which seems to presume that only those with addictions require these extra supports. Social Justice Ireland  advocates expanding Housing First to families, providing wraparound supports and services.

Budget 2022 contained nothing in support of those in the private rental sector. In recent years, it is from this sector that households enter homelessness. Much could be done to prevent loss of housing by the introduction of increased tenant protections.