‘€7.3m social housing fund not enough to solve crisis’

by Ian Begley

A €7.3m Government investment for social housing has been confirmed for Dublin West, but according to one councillor it is merely a “drop in the ocean”.
The funding will provide 33 new housing units across five projects for homeless people, older people and people with disabilities.
The Dublin Simon Community will use €2.7m to build 12 units for homeless people in Ongar, Waterville, Castlecurragh and Blanchardstown.
The Housing Association for Integrated Living will spend €0.4m on three units in Ongar to relocate people with disabilities from a congregated setting.
Tuath Housing Association, will use €1.4m on four units in Mulhuddart and Clonsilla for people with disabilities.
The Clanmill Housing Association was allocated €0.7m to construct three units in Clonee and Tyrrelstown for homeless people.
Lastly, the Circle Voluntary Housing Association, will spend €2.1m on 11 units in Clonee, Clonsilla, Castleknock and Tyrrelstown for homeless people, people with disabilities and older people.
Minister Leo Varadkar said: “This is a very significant investment in social housing in Dublin West and demonstrates the Government’s commitment to resolving the housing crisis. These five organisations provide essential services for homeless people, older people and people with a disability. I really welcome this new funding.”
Cllr Lorna Nolan (Ind) told The Gazette that although this funding is welcomed she feels it is merely a “drop in the ocean given the high number of homeless, older and disabled people living in the area”.
“These voluntary housing bodies do fantastic work and services they provide for individuals is brilliant,” she said.
“Of course I welcome any investment for homeless, older and disabled people, but the need for more social houses in the area greatly outweighs the number of units being proposed.”
Meanwhile, Cllr Paul Donnelly (SF) has called on everyone who is currently on the housing list and who has not yet submitted their housing needs assessment form to immediately contact the council’s housing department.
He said: “I raised this issue after several residents contacted me and said that they had not received any communication from the housing department and they were very worried about their current position on the housing list. I am pleased that the council will again make every effort to make contact with everyone who hasn’t yet made contact. According to the current files, about 40% of those registered have not yet returned their assessment forms.
“This in reality means that they will be removed from the list and lose all the time they have accrued on the list. This could be catastrophic for some families who may have up to 10 years on the housing list.”
For more information, visit www.fingalcoco.ie/housing.

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