[Sinn Fein]

31ú Deireadh Fómhair 2001

Homelessness must be Eliminated

Sinn Fein spokesperson on Housing and South Dublin County Councillor Seán Crowe has called on the government to tackle the issue of homelessness as a priority.  Cllr. Crowe was speaking following the launch of the `Youth Homelessness Strategy' by Minister of State Mary Hanafin today.

Cllr. Crowe said:

``The fact that official figures indicate that the number of young people who presented as homeless decreased by 25% in 2000 is to be welcomed.  However the fact remains that the number of people, young and old, who live on the streets is far too high.

``Homelessness can and should become a thing of the past.  After four years in power, this government has failed to provide hope to the vast majority of those with no place to call a home. The right to a house and home is a basic right.

``On any single night at least 20 young people present themselves as homeless.  This is wholly unsatisfactory.  The state has an obligation to cater for the needs of the most vulnerable in society. Thus far this government has failed.

``The Government's Youth Homelessness strategy must be expanded to incorporate clear target dates for the elimination of homelessness in this state. Sinn Fein demand a zero-homeless status for Dublin and Ireland.''

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