As five single people a day continue to become homeless, Dublin Simon asserts the homeless crisis is stealing more years from the lives of people with nowhere to call home
Dublin, 26 February 2021: Dublin Simon Community is once again sounding the alarm on the rising numbers of single people entering homelessness, as lack of availability especially in the Dublin housing market continues to restrict opportunities for this group to move on from homelessness for good.
This is the reality as the figures for the number of people in Emergency Accommodation in the first month of 2021 are released today by the Department of Housing, Local Government & Heritage.
“Single people and couples are not able to compete in the current housing market. Until there is a significant improvement in the availability of one-bed units for these groups to move into, we will continue to see the cycle of spiralling growth in the numbers of singles and couples stuck in emergency accommodation”, said Dublin Simon CEO Sam McGuinness today.
“Finding yourself homeless is a traumatic experience. Couple that with the challenges of sleeping on the street or spending long periods in emergency accommodation during a pandemic and we have a further health crisis on our hands caused by the impact on the mental and physical health of this group. Their lives effectively pause to focus on survival. This is a crisis that is stealing years from the lives of a generation, wasted time and wasted potential”, he added.
The figures for January showed that the trend of family homelessness in Dublin is continuing to decrease. But the number of single people has risen by 7% from January 2020 to January 2021. In 2020 the trend for families was reversed as 1,221 homes were found. However, the situation for single people and couples was the opposite as 1,660 in that category entered homelessness and 1,006 exited homelessness into a home over the course of the year. Figure 1 compares the total number of people in Dublin emergency accommodation with the number of single people for the period Jan 2020 – Jan 2021.
Figure 1: Dublin Emergency Accommodation Jan 2020 – Jan 2021
Dublin Simon Community is continuing to search for suitable accommodation for clients to move on from emergency accommodation and is also building more than 50 much needed one-bedroom accommodation units in a range of construction projects in the Dublin area.
With an average of five single individuals becoming homeless in the capital every day and only three people moving out of homelessness in the same period, it is obvious that a huge effort is needed from NGOs and Government agencies to prevent this crisis from becoming an irreversible catastrophe.
“Urgent measures are needed and creative thinking is required to exceed the number of single people moving into homelessness with the number of opportunities for people to move on to a secure home of their own”, added Sam McGuinness