Dublin South West TD, Seán Crowe, has said that the Minister for Housing, Eoghan Murphy, is not up to the task of solving the housing and homelessness crisis in Ireland. The Sinn Féin TD said that it was children and their families who were suffering because of his inaction.

Deputy Seán Crowe said:

“The latest figures from the Department of Housing show a dramatic increase in the number of children in emergency accommodation. In July there were 3,778 children in Department of Education funded emergency accommodation up 133 on the June figures.

“There was also an increase in the number of families with 1,721 recorded in July up 35 on the previous month. Meanwhile the total number of adults remained static at 6,497.

“1,265 families in Dublin, representing almost 2,800 children, are currently trapped in homelessness and its innocent children and their families who are suffering because of his inaction and inability to tackle the crisis.

“We know that once again the number of children in emergency accommodation across the state has risen since the last set of figures were released, but there is no sense of urgency and no new approach coming from the Minister and his government.

“Minister Murphy and his government are clearly not up to the task of solving the housing and homelessness crisis. Their devotion to the private market is short-sighted and only leading to a greater problem with spiralling rents and a subsequent lower standard of living for families across the state.

“Their rebuilding Ireland plan is not delivering. We need a different approach that will deliver more housing, deal with the chronic shortage of affordable and social housing, create security of tenure, and prioritise and end the housing and homeless crisis.”

Crowe continued:

Vulnerable children caught up in Direct Provision are also suffering under this government. 659 children have spent over two years in so called temporary accommodation, while 37 children have been trapped in this system for over seven years.

“The fact that children are being left to grow up in these privately-operated quasi-detention centres is a reflection on how little they matter under this government.

“The government, we are informed, are ‘disappointed’ in the levels of homeless and the latest direct provision figures, but that will be cold comfort to these children and their families.

“Children are suffering and the government are doing absolutely nothing to dispel the lack of hope and the sense of hopelessness for those caught up in homelessness or so called temporary accommodation.”