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Homelessness in Ireland

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Homelessness in Ireland is an evolving social issue. During the 19th century, homelessness was a pervasive impact of the Great Famine (1845–1852).[1][2] During the 20th century, homelessness in Ireland was associated with older males who may have had addiction or alcoholism issues. However, since the 1990s and into the 21st century, it has been recognised that the homeless population includes increasing numbers of women and children.[3][4] Commentators have attributed the ongoing events (described in the news media as the 'homelessness crisis')[5] to the post-2008 Irish economic downturn and 'subsequent fiscal adjustments',[6][7] and the parallel impacts of reduced familial incomes, mortgage arrears[8] and rental increases which followed impacts to housing supply.[9][10]

In 2013, spokespersons of the Irish government stated that they would have "eradicated homelessness" in Ireland by 2016.[11] However, this goal was not achieved. Rather, by 2017, the issue and prevalence of homelessness had increased,[12] with the number of homeless people in Ireland rising by 25% between September 2016 and September 2017.[13] Figures published during 2016 and early 2017 indicated that there were then 4,377 people living in emergency accommodation, the highest figure seen in Ireland to that date.[14][15] By mid-2019 this had increased further, with figures indicating that more than 10,000 people were homeless in Ireland, with approximately one-third of these being children.[16][17] As of February 2021, there were reportedly 8,313 homeless people in Ireland (of which 5,987 were adults and 2,326 children).[18] In 2021, 115 homeless people died in Dublin.[19]

A "Homelessness Report" by the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government in November 2016 indicated that while there were hundreds of homeless families and individuals in other regions, the issue was most prevalent in the Dublin area.[20] As of February 2021, approximately 70% of homeless people were in Dublin.[18]

Youth homelessness is often defined as a separate issue to homelessness. Though the issue was not recognized by government until the late 1980s, since the mid-1960s youth homelessness was gradually articulated as a form of homelessness different from that experienced by adults.[21]

In popular culture[edit]

  • Irish folk-punk singer Jinx Lennon included a song about homelessness on his 2020 album "Border Schizo FFFolk Songs For The Fuc**d" named "No Homeless People In Drogheda" addressing the "wilful blindness and denial of the homelessness crisis in Ireland from both the public and the government" alike.[22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Homelessness crisis: 'Families on streets like time of Famine'". Irish Examiner. 12 February 2015.
  2. ^ Niamh Ann Kelly (2010). "Remembering Homelessness and the Great Irish Famine". {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ Carlson, Helena. "Women and homelessness in Ireland." The Irish Journal of Psychology 11, no. 1 (1990): 68-76.
  4. ^ "240 Homeless Women and Children Sought the Safety Of Cork's Edel House in 2016". Evening Echo. Archived from the original on 29 December 2016. Retrieved 24 January 2017.
  5. ^ "Main Topics - "Homelessness Crisis"". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 24 January 2017.
  6. ^ The Social Dimensions of the Crisis: The Evidence and its Implication (PDF) (Report). National Economic and Social Council. 2013. The economic crash of 2008 has had profound social impacts, exacerbated by the subsequent fiscal adjustment [..] there are now just under 100,000 people on local-authority housing waiting lists and nearly 4,000 homeless people
  7. ^ "Housing and homeless crisis 'out of control'". Irish Times. 18 August 2015.
  8. ^ "Homeless problem could get far worse, says Peter McVerry". Irish Times. 12 January 2017.
  9. ^ "Housing supply at worst level for 50 years as prices exceed boomtime levels". Independent News & Media. 11 July 2016.
  10. ^ "Urgent action needed to tackle rent increases, charity says". Irish Times. 31 August 2015.
  11. ^ "Homelessness in Ireland: Government plans to stop people sleeping rough by 2016 labelled unachievable". Irish Mirror. 23 September 2014.
  12. ^ "Irish soup kitchens plan expansion as homelessness crisis worsens". Irish Central. 5 January 2017.
  13. ^ "Latest Figures on Homelessness in Ireland". Focus Ireland. Archived from the original on 14 November 2017.
  14. ^ Fitzgerald, Cormac. "The vow to end homelessness by Christmas? Not going to happen". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 1 December 2016.
  15. ^ "Homeless crisis: 62 extra emergency beds to be available in Dublin". The Irish Times. Retrieved 1 December 2016.
  16. ^ "Homeless figures hit record high". Irish Examiner. 30 April 2019. Retrieved 5 July 2019.
  17. ^ "Homelessness figures above 10,000 for sixth month in a row". thejournal.ie. Journal Media. 2 September 2019. Retrieved 5 September 2019.
  18. ^ a b "Progress made in reducing homeless figures at start of pandemic now being eroded, charities say". thejournal.ie. Journal Media Ltd. 26 February 2021. Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  19. ^ Moloney, Eoghan; McCullagh, Tony. "115 homeless people died in Dublin last year, new figures show". Irish Independent. Retrieved 20 April 2022.
  20. ^ Homelessness Report November 2016 (PDF) (Report). Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government. November 2016.
  21. ^ O’Sullivan, Eoin, and Paula Mayock. "Youth Homelessness in Ireland." Youth Studies Ireland (2008): 15.
  22. ^ McKevitt, Julie. "Jinx Lennon – Border Schizo FFFOlk Songs For The Fuc**d". thethinair.net. Retrieved 20 September 2022.