Tallaght Garda Station shelters homeless family

Updated: 14:40

TALLAGHT Garda Station provided shelter to a young mother and her six kids last night, with pictures of the family sleeping on seats in the station’s waiting area being reported on nationally this morning.

The young mother presented at Tallaght Garda Station with her six children, aged between one and 11 years, on Wednesday night as they had nowhere to go.

tallaght garda stationAccording to a Garda spokesperson, officers at Tallaght tried all emergency lines in relation to homeless shelters, however no accommodation was located.

A number of hotels were also called.

According to the spokesperson: “The family were cared for during the night by the members working and received a hot breakfast this morning in Tallaght Garda Station".

The family left the Garda station this morning and were on their way to South Dublin County Council’s housing unit.

Anthony Flynn of Inner City Helping Homeless tweeted about the sitiuation, and said that overall eight families were referred to Garda stations last night due to a lack of accommodation in the city.

When contacted by The Echo this morning, South Dublin County Council said: “All efforts are made to ensure families have accommodation on a temporary basis until more permanent arrangements can be put in place.

“It is not the policy of South Dublin County Council to refer homeless families to Garda stations, therefore we do not keep figures of families presenting to same.”

The council added that families are assessed case by case at the homeless clinic.

“If homeless priority is granted families would either be accommodated in a homeless hub (where availability exists) or granted self-accommodate,” the council said.

“Self-accommodate allows applicants to self-source hotel accommodation on a short term basis.  

“If a family cannot source hotel accommodation a Freephone number is supplied and families can access accommodation through the family intake team on a night by night basis.”

'Uprecedented number of families presented'

The Echo also contacted the DRHE (Dublin Regional Homeless Executive), which said in a statement: "On the night of the 8th August 2018 an unprecedented number of families presented out-of-hours seeking emergency accommodation. 

"We were notified by the Family Homeless Action Team that they were actively engaged with 10 families, who were unable for whatever reason to source their own accommodation.  

"Our Central Placement Team were able to source emergency accommodation for five of the families, one family refused the offer of accommodation, two of the families were linked back in with their region (outside of Dublin) and two did not seek further assistance." 

According to the DHRE, it is currently providing, with the four Dublin local authorities, emergency accommodation to around 1,300 families across the Dublin region.  

'Ever worsening problem'

Dublin Mid-West TD and Sinn Fein Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin has called for an immediate statement from the Minister for Housing, Eoghan Murphy. 

“As the holiday season reaches its peak and with the added pressure of the Pope's visit to Ireland many hotels are withdrawing their rooms from emergency accommodation", Deputy Ó Broin said. 

"This along with the increasing numbers of families presenting as homeless led to last nights crisis situation.

“Given that this problem is likely to recur during August, Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy must make a public statement on the matter today outlining what additional measures he will put in place to address this ever worsening problem."

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