‘Transient sites’ would allow travellers live traditional lifestyle
The Traveller accommodation developments in Owendoher Haven in Rathfarnham

‘Transient sites’ would allow travellers live traditional lifestyle

SOUTH Dublin County Council should provide “transient sites” to allow members of the Traveller community to “live a traditional nomadic lifestyle”, according to a local councillor.

The topic of Traveller accommodation in South Dublin County was raised by People Before Profit councillor Madeleine Johansson at a recent council meeting.

Cllr Johansson asked the council what actions were being taken to implement the recommendations set out in the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission report on the South Dublin County Council Traveller Accommodation Equality Review.

The review recommended that the council establish and develop a response to the needs of Travellers in the county who are nomadic.

Cllr Johansson said: “South Dublin County Council keep kicking the can down the road when it comes to providing transient sites for Travellers in South Dublin.

“The provision of such sites would allow Travellers to continue to live a traditional nomadic lifestyle, if they so wished.

“The council keep arguing that we first need to meet the existing need, however the slow pace of development of Traveller Specific Accommodation means that those needs are never met.

“Instead, there should be an acceleration of the Traveller Accommodation Programme and simultaneously a plan for transient sites should be progressed.”

In response to Cllr Johansson’s question, the council stated in part that they planned to recruit a designated Traveller liaison officer.

The council also stated that they are working in consultation with Travellers regarding the redesign and construction of new culturally-appropriate Traveller accommodation developments in Oldcastle, Clondalkin and Owendoher Haven, Rathfarnham.

In relation to accommodation for transient members of the Traveller community, the council said they would “consider the need for, the provision of and suitable locations, if necessary, for transient accommodation in the county in conjunction with the other Dublin Local Authorities and in consultation with local Travellers.”

However, they added that at present they are prioritising the provision of Traveller-specific accommodation to meet the current accommodation needs of Travellers in South Dublin ahead of provision of a transient site.

Cllr Johansson said: “While I welcome some of the measures being outlined in the reply such as the recruitment of a dedicated Traveller liaison officer, it is very disappointing that there are no proposals around the recognition of nomadism in the Traveller population.

“Providing transient sites would go a long towards not only recognising but also supporting the needs of Travellers in South Dublin.”

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