“Housing healthier than critics say”

by Gazette Reporter

Homelessness in Dublin 15 is “at epidemic levels and out of control”, according to Deputy Ruth
Coppinger (SP). She says the Anti-Austerity Alliance has had 50 local homeless families seeking help over the summer.
T h e g r o u p h a s announced that a public meeting with Fr Peter Mc Verry will be held at Huntstown Community Centre.
This follows publication of data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO ) which shows that a total of 662 new homes have been completed in Fingal from January to July this year. It represents an 87% increase in house building activity on the same period last year.

The figures have been welcomed by TanaisteJoan Burton. She said the figures painted an optimistic picture of the level of housing activity in Fingal so far this year.

“In Dublin 15, construction is well under way on new housing units in Hansfield, and new housing construction has commenced in Diswellstown and Tyrellstown. It’s a reflection of the population growth the area has witnessed, but demonstrates that in Fingal we are making progress in meeting the challenge of providing Homelessness out of control – Coppinger homes for families,” she said
While a lot of work remained to be done to meet the range of housing needs that exist locally, she said the date ‘proves we are in a much healthier place that many of the Government’s critics would like us to believe”.
One such critic is Deputy Coppinger, who said that an 87% increase on next to nothing is nothing to shout about and that these houses are private residential and out of the reach of thousands of families on the Blanchardstown waiting lists.
“Joan Burton’s attempt to distract from the homeless epidemic in her own backyard by announcing
667 private houses in Fingal is an insult.
Fine Gael and Labour are getting found out on the housing crisis and desperately looking for signs of building anywhere that they can point to,” she said, adding that the Government needs to build thousands of social houses to address this.
She said that young women with children are the main victims of the “lack of any social or affordable home-building by the state,” and that sleeping on sofas and in cars and being told to ‘self-accommodate’
is now the norm, because the council simply cannot cope.
“The Anti Austerity Alliance calls for a ban on all evictions and repossessions to stem the flood of homelessness; for the considerable amount of Nama property and land in Dublin West to be turned over for housing the homeless; and for councils to be funded to build the homes needed,” she said.
The meeting will be held on Thursday, September 17 at 7pm.

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