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shock stats Homeless services facing huge Christmas pressure with 1,000 families in emergency shelter

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Volunteers of Inner City Helping Homeless bring food and essential clothing to the rough sleepers

Volunteers of Inner City Helping Homeless bring food and essential clothing to the rough sleepers

Volunteers of Inner City Helping Homeless bring food and essential clothing to the rough sleepers

The Simon Community has said it is facing increasing pressure over the Christmas and New Year period as Ireland also faces into a third Covid-19 lockdown.

The charity revealed the challenges homelessness agencies are facing as it emerged that more than 1,000 families will spend Christmas in emergency accommodation this year in Ireland.

According to the latest figures from the Department of Housing, there were 8,484 people in homeless emergency accommodation during the last week of November.

The number includes 1,034 families — a reduction on the previous month, which saw 1,117 families homeless. It also includes 2,452 children.

However, the number of those experiencing homeless fell by 253 people on the previous month.

The Simon Communities, which provides services to those experiencing homelessness across the country, said: “There has been a welcome fall in the number of families in emergency accommodation this month but we have to be cautious as some families are taken in by relatives during the Christmas period.”

Focus Ireland has meanwhile called for a broader eviction ban until April 2021 to prevent homeless services from becoming “stretched to breaking point”.

“A more easily understood eviction ban is required to fully protect all people who rent their homes during this pandemic,” Focus Ireland CEO Pat Dennigan said.

Meanwhile, another homeless charity has warned there will be further deaths of rough sleepers on the streets of Dublin over Christmas.

Chief executive of Dublin based charity, Inner City Helping Homeless (ICHH), Anthony Flynn said: “We’re spending a hell of a lot of money, and we’re not getting the results that we need in terms of outcomes and exits within homeless services.

“There are going to be more deaths,” he added. “There are going to be more deaths over the coming weeks and coming into Christmas as well.


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