Long-Term Homelessness is robbing people of better life outcomes

Charity is disappointed by the rise in numbers accessing Dublin emergency accommodation and highlights the fact that more than half of all those using its services have been homeless for more than three years. 

Dublin, 24th September 2021:  Dublin Simon Community has responded to the latest Homeless Report with a stark warning about the effects of long-term homelessness on the physical and mental health of people in emergency accommodation.

The number of people in emergency accommodation in Dublin in August 2021 shows a drop of 4.7% over the previous year, but an increase of 1% month on month.  According to the report released by the Department of Housing, Local Government & Heritage, 5930 people, including 4220 total adults, 723 families, 2995 singles and 1710 children were in emergency accommodation in August 2021.

The recent release of Housing for All may provide some light at the end of the tunnel, but for more than half of Dublin Simon clients (54%) that glimmer of hope is coming when they have already spent more than three years – and in 42% of cases – more than five years in homelessness.

CEO Sam McGuiness cited the toll on the physical and mental health of people trapped in long-term homelessness.  “This population is desperate to exit homelessness and yet they are spending longer than ever before in emergency accommodation.  This group deserves far better lives than the ones they are currently living. 

“We see first hand the toll this is taking in the increased demands for our treatment services, counselling services and the increase in crisis counselling interventions.  Outcomes for people in emergency accommodation will not improve until they have a secure home of their own.  Until this happens there is scant hope of a better future for this vulnerable group”, added Sam McGuinness. 

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