Seanad debates

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Nithe i dtosach suíonna - Commencement Matters

Homeless Persons Supports

10:30 am

Photo of Malcolm NoonanMalcolm Noonan (Carlow-Kilkenny, Green Party) | Oireachtas source

Again, I agree with the Senator. As a statistic, 2,344 is way too high a number. We want, and the Government is committed, to end homelessness. I reiterate that addressing homelessness is a priority of the Government. Budget 2022 reflects this priority with provision of €194 million in funding for homelessness services. When account is taken of Covid-related costs, this is an increase on the baseline funding provided in 2021. Good progress continues to be made, which is shown by recent homelessness reports published by my Department on Friday, 30 October 2020. These reports show that exits from homelessness remain strong and that the number of people in emergency accommodation remains well below the numbers recorded in 2019 and 2020. While there remains a lot of work to do on this front, I recognise the progress that has been made on the ground by local authorities and our NGO service providers in changing people's lives. I appreciate the fact that the Senator has mentioned local authorities specifically. They do amazing work on the ground. I know that from my county. Significant numbers of households continue to exit homelessness into a home each month. We will continue to build on the good work already being done in this area. In the case of young people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, I reassure Senators that my colleagues in the Government and I are doing everything we can in that regard. We will continue to work towards our national goal of eradicating homelessness by 2030. We recognise the key challenges, particularly for young people, and we are deeply committed to continuing to address this issue together.


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