Homelessness rises again in Galway and 'shows no signs of abating' says Farrell

The number of homeless adults in Galway has jumped by 37 per cent over the last six months - almost twice the national increase in homelessness - according to Government figures.

According to figures revealed in a new report from the Department of the Environment, 150 adults are homeless in Galway, an increase of 37 per cent since December which according to Sinn Féin city councillor Mairéad Farrell is "almost twice the national average rise"

“In many ways this comes as no surprise to me as someone who deals regularly with people and families in homeless situations in Galway," she said. "The figures are important, however, in that they give an official recognition of a crisis that is not showing any signs of abating."

While she welcomed the Government's new Housing Action Plan, announced by Minister for Housing, Simon Coveney, describing it as "clearly better than what had been announced previously by his predecessor Alan Kelly", she said it was "not good enough".

“The fact Minister Coveney inaccurately claimed he is applying a €2.2 billion increase to social housing spend rather than the actual increase of €1.54 billion is a troubling sign for the integrity of the plan," she said. "This is a crucial difference because these figures will determine the ability of Government, local authorities such as Galway City Council, and approved housing bodies to deliver the social houses that people need.

She described as "more worrying" that the increase in Capital Spending on Social Housing next year is "a mere €150 million".

"Given the relentless rises in the numbers of people in emergency accommodation," she said, "living at risk of homelessness and languishing on local authority waiting lists, this increase is simply not enough.”

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