Words: Ellen Kenny
The Council have announced several several contingency plans to assist homeless people in the city amid the continuing heatwave.
Dublin City Council have announced a contingency plan to help homeless people during the heatwave this week. They announced similar plans during the last heatwave, but are now redoubling their efforts amid rising temperatures once again.
The Council will collaborate with Dublin Simon and the Peter McVerry Trust to operate the Dublin Street Outreach Service and Housing First Intake Team. They will be engaging with those at risk of rough sleeping in order to provide shelter for anyone who needs it.
The Council will distribute water and sunscreen to homeless people in the city. They also plan to “ensure the provision of shelter, as required.”
The Council will also encourage people to be more “sun-aware”. They have also encouraged the use of social media and their app Rough Sleeper to alert the authorities about people sleeping rough during the hot weather. The Housing First Intake Team visit the location of reported homelessness and find the person to support them.
The Outreach service also ensures that people experiencing rough sleeping are linked with other appropriate housing and health services to prevent further rough sleeping.
Temperatures in Dublin this week are set to hit as a high as 31 degrees this week. As the heatwave continues, Government bodies and charities have expressed growing concerns for homeless people in the hot weather.
A large concern was whether or not homeless people knew the heatwave was even coming.
Peter McVerry explained, “They don’t listen to the news, they don’t go onto mainstream media, so they may not even be aware of the dangers that the next few days will hold.”
“Even if they do, they’re not used to sunscreens, they won’t be even thinking of sunscreens and even if they were they wouldn’t have the money for them.”
The latest figures from the Department of Housing show that there are 10,492 homeless people in Ireland. There are currently 5,258 homeless people in Dublin alone.
Dublin City Council also found that in spring, 91 individuals were sleeping rough in the Dublin region.
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