Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Dessie Ellis TD has blasted the government’s plan to cut €4.5 million from funding for homeless services in Dublin city. The cuts were confirmed by the Head of Finance at Dublin City Council, reporting that the Department of Environment had informed her of this plan for 2014.
Deputy Ellis continued:
“This is a shocking move by the government which has disingenuously committed itself to ending long term homelessness by 2016, a goal made farcical by its own policy decisions.
“Spending on housing and homelessness should be protected in the up-coming budget having been slashed for five consecutive years. This move is the betrayal of a promise made by the government only seven months ago.”
“The news comes in the week that the Peter McVerry Trust reported more people needing hot food and emergency shelter from them and Focus Ireland saying that there are seven new homeless people in the state every day.
“These groups have called for a political solution to the problem of homelessness. They have called for the government to play its part.
“There are 5000 people homeless, growing numbers sleeping rough and many tens of thousands living in housing not suitable for human habitation. This cut of €4.5 million (10.7% cut from 42 million in 2012) will be devastating to those who depend on these services.
“Homeless people are at much greater risk of physical and mental ill-health, as well as being vulnerable to violence, exploitation and abuse.