Conditions at a city centre apartment block have been compared to Dublin’s slum tenements of 100 years ago.

Residents at the Constitution Hill complex say they are dealing with an ever-worsening rat infestation problem as well as damp and mould in their flats.

They also allege that Dublin City Council, which runs the flat complex, are allowing conditions to get worse so tenants will leave and the land can be sold to private developers.

Resident Gillian Brien told Dublin Gazette:

“I have rat cages inside and outside my flat that I have to check before I go to work.

“A few weeks ago, a five-year-old child was bitten by a rat. So we are dealing with rats, damp and mould in our flats, yet DCC refuse to engage with us.

“Does anyone care about us?”

Brien, who is the People Before Profit local representative in the north inner city, has lived in Constitution Hill for almost two decades.

She recently organised a community protest at Dublin City Council offices over the conditions in Constitution Hill, Queen Street, Dorset Street and Upper Dominick Street.

She said:

“We have made complaints, put forward council motions, protested and even had Richard Boyd Barret raise our plight in the Dail, yet still nothing has been done.

“Two weeks ago they [DCC] headed out to put up trees so they could hide our tenement conditions. We managed to block them from going ahead with it.

“Someone from around here works in the Henrietta Street tenement where they bring tourists for the guided tours, and they said the conditions we are living in are similar to the tenements in the early 1900s.

“DCC are facilitating the largest transfer of public land to private developers Ireland has ever seen.

“They are doing this in order to facilitate gentrification, to drive the local working class community out and socially ‘cleanse’ the inner city.

“Some 15 years ago, if you had an issue that needed fixing here you contacted the council and it would be done within two days.

“In the past five years, however, this has gotten worse to the point that now they are not responding at all.

“Some 12 other DCC-run apartment complexes recently protested about slum conditions, yet the media seem to have chosen to ignore that,” she said.

Dublin City Council had not responded to Dublin Gazette by the time of going to press about the issues raised.