Cian O'Callaghan TD

Homelessness figures today shattered another grim record while local authorities are failing to spend their social housing budgets, according to Social Democrats TD Cian O’Callaghan.

Deputy O’Callaghan, who is the party’s housing spokesperson, said:

“The latest figures show there are now 13,179 people living in homeless emergency accommodation – tragically, 3,991 of these are children. This is the highest number ever recorded in the history of the State.

“In 2019, when the number of people living in homeless accommodation surpassed 10,000, Darragh O’Brien – in his role as opposition housing spokesperson – decried that another record had been shattered by the Fine Gael Government.

“He went on to state that ‘this cannot continue’ and outlined how Fianna Fáil would fix the housing crisis.

“We are now more than three years into his term as Minister for Housing and the number of people living in emergency accommodation has grown by 52 per cent. Shamefully, the number of children growing up without a home has increased by a staggering 50 per cent.

“This is a monumental failure that brings with it devastating consequences. We urgently need more social homes to protect children from the trauma of growing up homeless.

“This week, the Department of Housing published their Supplementary Estimates for 2023. It showed that €220 million allocated for new local authority housing will not be spent this year. Last year, €237 million allocated to build new local authority housing was left unspent.

“This failure to spend money allocated for social housing is having a direct impact on the increasing amounts of people becoming homeless.

“The Minister for Housing needs to explain why he is repeatedly failing to ensure that these budgets are spent where they are urgently needed.”

November 24, 2023

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