Criticism as Dublin internet café houses homeless people

It is believed they are paying €1 an hour

Criticism as Dublin internet café houses homeless people

Image supplied to Newstalk.com

An internet café in Dublin is offering homeless people a place to sleep for a fee.

The Five Star internet café on Talbot Street says it is is only charging the people for internet usage.

It is believed they are paying €1 an hour for the floorspace.

But one local councillor says it is not up to commercial premises to solve the homeless crisis.

People Before Profit Councillor Andrew Keegan said: "I do feel for the the homeless people, they're looking for refuge.

"But there's no beds for them...Some of these people might be trying to get over addiction problems - a commercial premises is not suitable."

Image supplied to Newstalk.com

He also says this type of approach would manipulate the true figure of those sleeping rough in the city.

"These people would be undocumented - the hidden homeless.

"You hear about 100 people sleeping rough, but these people are missed out (in the count)."

Image supplied to Newstalk.com

Councillor Keegan explained to Newstalk.com how he found out about the café. He says he met a homeless man for coffee, who gave him the details.

But he believes the premises is doing itself no favours.

"The shop is putting themselves in a difficult position. You don't really rest sitting on seats with you head in your hands.

"(The owner) charges €1 an hour for internet access, but its just really not suitable. It's not up to commercial premises to solve the crisis.

"You need proper safety in place. The web cafe is a business of yesterday, so I'd say he's struggling to keep it going".

Image supplied to Newstalk.com

And while Councillor Keegan admits homeless hostels around the city also have a cover charge, he says it is a different set-up.

"You're not being timed, the clock is not running on you (in a homeless hostel)."