Charity calls for emergency intervention to avoid homeless deaths

ICHH warns there is a “tsunami” of rough sleepers camping out in the freezing cold

A voluntary group for the homeless has voiced fears more rough sleepers will die on the streets of Dublin this winter.

Inner City Helping Homeless has warned that there is a “tsunami” of rough sleepers camping out in the freezing cold - with stocks of sleeping bags running low.

A Status Yellow snow and ice weather warning was lifted this morning following sub-zero conditions overnight.

ICCH chief executive Anthony Flynn is calling for emergency interventions to avoid further homeless deaths this Christmas.

“We need intervention immediately,” he said. “We need buildings opened, we need supports put in place.”

“We have the voluntary sector with an overreliance now in regard to implementing supports.

“The overreliance on the voluntary sector is going to burst at some stage.

“We can’t keep doing what we are doing; the problem is a tsunami; it is an epidemic right across the city and we need intervention immediately.”

The charity has launched an online appeal for donations to allow it to continue to provide basic comforts to people sleeping out in the cold.

The Government has confirmed plans to bring 200 additional permanent emergency beds into use by December 18th, however Mr Flynn warned that people will die unless an emergency intervention is made now.

“We can’t take these people off the streets and what we are seeing is a lack of sleeping bags on our own end; we are looking for support in regard to that,” he said.

“But unless we actually open up buildings and we get people off the streets, we are going to see deaths on the street over the next couple of weeks.”

The latest survey from the Dublin Regional Homeless Executive (DRHE) found a total of 184 people were sleeping rough across the Dublin region on the night of November 7th.