Focus Ireland has said it is hugely concerned for rough sleepers amid the “life-threatening” cold weather.
The temperature is at its coldest in 12 years and on Monday the thermostat reached -9C in County Down.
Rough sleepers are at huge risk of hypothermia and Focus Ireland’s Mike Allen said the cold snap is “obviously life-threatening if you’ve nowhere to go.”
There are believed to be between 100 and 130 people sleeping rough in Dublin and there are others sleeping on the streets in Galway, Cork and Waterford as well.
“They [homeless organisations] all look to provide additional beds and cots in areas where they wouldn’t normally do so, so they can have additional beds in place,” Mr Allen explained to The Hard Shoulder.
“The regional homeless executive looks to see whether there’s additional B&Bs and other things that they can get.”
Focus Ireland has also been asked to keep their café in Dublin’s Temple Bar open 24 hours a day to provide rough sleepers with a warm place to stay overnight when temperatures are at their lowest.
“Our staff normally don’t work night shifts,” Mr Allen said.
“But they put their names forward and the place has been open every night since the cold hit and will remain open until we get the news from the Met service that the temperature is rising again.”
Long-term, the organisation hopes that the State will be able to provide all people with proper emergency accommodation in a time of crisis.
“We keep on saying that the ultimate answer has to be that we shouldn’t be in this situation,” he said.
“Everybody should have an affordable home and those who don’t have a home should have a safe place to sleep.”
Main image: A rough sleeper. Picture by: Alamy.com