Peter McVerry Trust, the national homeless and housing charity, has called for a greater emphasis to be placed on providing homes for single people in homelessness. The charity was responding to the latest rough sleeper count in Dublin which found 184 people to be sleeping rough on the night of November 7th. This is the highest number on record since the count began in 2007 and it is double the winter 2015 figure.
The Winter 2017 Rough Sleeper figure is 184, just released by DRHE. Highest on record. More than double winter 2015. pic.twitter.com/KnUMRz1IJv
— Peter McVerry Trust (@PMVTrust) November 22, 2017
Pat Doyle CEO of Peter McVerry Trust said “The figure of 184 is very disappointing and it’s clearly not acceptable. There has been a huge increase in the number of beds spaces in emergency accommodation and the Housing First project has housed 76 people in the last year.”
“We are now in the middle of preparations to provide an additional 85 emergency bed spaces before Christmas across Dublin. These spaces will provide invaluable shelter to people in need of emergency accommodation. However, the need remains to secure more housing options to enable people to get off the street and exit homelessness for good.”
Lack of Housing for Single People
Mr Doyle said there is insufficient emphasis on housing for single people and couples. “A critical measure in addressing the needs of people sleeping rough is to provide social housing for single people and couples. At the moment the emphasis remains too much on building 3 and 4 bed family homes and while they are needed they can’t come ahead of the housing needs of people.”
“It is imperative that each local authority begins to provide social housing through direct build for single people and couples and that it is adequately represented in all new build housing schemes be they private or public housing.”