Depaul CEO: Current homelessness situation is "the worst I've seen"

Kerry Anthony says that social housing "is the only solution" to this current crisis

Depaul CEO: Current homelessness situation is "the worst I've seen"

Kerry Anthony. Image: RollingNews.ie

The CEO of homeless charity Depaul says the crisis is "probably the worst I've seen it", and long term housing is the only solution.

Depaul says 18 babies were born into homelessness last year in the families they worked with.

The organisation says a excruciating lack of social housing is making progress impossible.

While Depaul works predominantly with single homeless adults, it saw a 10% rise in the number of families needing help last year.

At the publication of Depaul’s annual report, Kerry Anthony said the homeless situation needs more input from Government

The Housing Minister has called an emergency summit on homelessness for this coming Friday, with the heads of all the country's local authorities set to attend.

Ms Anthony explained: "I would like to hear that new systems are being put in place to make sure that we can free up the availability for building houses - whether that be through finances, through land - [and] making sure the local authorities have the correct resources in place to be able to deliver on the targets that we have set.

"Really, more than ever, social housing is the only solution to this crisis."

She noted that in 20 years of working in homeless services, she doesn't think she's ever seen the situation as bad as it is at the moment:

Meanwhile, an inner city school in Dublin is working hard to keep its homeless pupils busy.

St Laurence O’Toole’s CBS in Seville Place is providing almost 24 hour care with food, activities and transport all included.

Speaking to The Pat Kenny Show, Principal Mark Candon explained: "We basically try and make sure, as much as possible, that the kids are engaged and active, from the time the child is getting up in the morning."