Near 20% increase in Kilkenny homeless since start of the year
By Colin Bartley
THE amount of people homeless or living in emergency accommodation in Kilkenny continues to rise.
Homelessness in Kilkenny city and county has increased by 18% since the turn of the year.
And this trend is set to continue if a solution to the private rental market shortage in Kilkenny isn’t addressed according to Homeless advocate and manager of the Good Shepherd Centre, Noel Sherry.
Noel Sherry told KilkennyNow.ie: “In term of overall referrals (of people seeking accommodation) there has been a decrease, Kilkenny is probably the only county in the country that has seen a decrease in referrals but unfortunately that number of 60 is there.
“What’s really worrying is access to private rented accommodation is shrinking, there is not an adequate supply of private rented accommodation in Kilkenny.
“Things are going to continue to deteriorate in Kilkenny if this situation continues.”
These homelessness figures were released in a new report by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government.
The report shows there are 60 people homeless in Kilkenny at present, up from 51 people at the turn of the year.
In the South East region, 296 adults and 60 children are homeless. There are 21 single-parent families homeless in the region, while a further 12 families find themselves in temporary or emergency accommodation.
The majority of the homeless in the South East are between 25 to 44 years of age. Six people over the age of 65 having no accommodation or living in temporary accommodation in the region.
The figures show there are twice as many homeless men as women in the South East. In total there are over 10,000 people homeless or living in emergency accommodation across the country.
Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy stated: “We continue to do everything we can to get people out of homelessness but the increase in July shows that this remains a huge challenge.”
“There are fewer families and children in emergency accommodation today than this time last year. Of course, there shouldn’t be any, but the fact that there are less, despite continuing high levels of presentations each month, speaks to the huge response from NGO’s, the DRHE, local authorities and the Government.”