Wednesday, 6 February 2019
Ceisteanna ar Reachtaíocht a Gealladh - Questions on Promised Legislation
The December homeless figures show that there were 9,753 people in homeless accommodation. In an accompanying statement issued at the time the Minister, Deputy Eoghan Murphy, stated there was sufficient bed capacity to provide a bed for anyone who wanted one. That is simply not the case. Two weeks' ago, I personally brought a case in Wicklow to the attention of the Minister. It involves a ludicrous policy in Wicklow County Council under which part-time emergency homeless accommodation is provided for individuals. I brought to attention the case of a young woman with three children who was pregnant and who had been in bed and breakfast accommodation provided by the local authority. The local authority had cut the number of nights a week it was provided from seven to four. That is the policy and it not an isolated case. It is the policy of Wicklow County Council under which we see families having to share accommodation. It has got to the stage where the woman in question has to make a choice to put herself and her children out on the street or stay in the accommodation. She did the right thing. She chose to stay in it.