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Record number of homeless

Wednesday, 4th September, 2019 4:40pm

The number of people in emergency accommodation has risen on Leeside again after two months of modest decline.

The latest available figures were released this week which revealed that July was the worst month ever for adults per month in emergency accommodation in Cork at 422, up five per cent compared to June 2019.

July 2019 also saw the highest number of men, women and children per month in emergency accommodation in the southwest (Cork and Kerry) with 890 men, women and children, a seven per cent rise compared to June 2019.

It also saw the highest number of females in emergency accommodation in the southwest with 239 women, up five per cent compared to June.

Families in emergency accommodation in the southwest also saw an increase of six per cent with 143 families compared to the month previous.

A Cork Simon spokesman told the Cork Independent: “It’s most disappointing that the number of people accessing emergency accommodation in Cork and the southwest rose in July, following two consecutive months of decline.

“As the Dáil prepares to return on 17 September, solutions to this crisis must be to the fore of political discussion at the highest levels. If those in housing exclusion and homelessness are to weather the economic difficulties that lie ahead as a result of Brexit, we need to continue to increase the housing infrastructure that will provide affordable homes.”

The spokesman added: “More than three years after the launch of Rebuilding Ireland, we would ask the minister to look again at the allocation levels of social housing to those in long-term homelessness.”

The monthly report for July showed that there were a total of 10,275 individuals in emergency accommodation, including 6,497 adults, 1,721 families and 3,778 dependants nationally.

Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy said: “We continue to do everything we can to get people out of homelessness but the increase in July shows that this remains a huge challenge. There are fewer families and children in emergency accommodation today than this time last year. Of course there shouldn’t be any, but the fact that there are less, despite continuing high levels of presentations each month, speaks to the huge response from NGO’s local authorities and the Government. I want to thank them for their dedication in helping people in such a crisis.”

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