In relation to homelessness the priority continues to be ensuring that any homeless person will have access to shelter during Storm Ophelia and the following is the up to date position:
- Housing First Teams and Local Authorities continue to offer shelter to those on the streets and are transporting individuals to a range of facilities.
- Additional facilities providing shelter and supports to those who need them have opened up across the country today.
- Notices have been posted in relation to the extra facilities, cafes and emergency beds that are available in the system.
- There have been over 100 calls to the emergency lines and to the rough sleeper email address from concerned members of the public in relation to homeless individuals. These have all been followed up on.
- There are buses in the Dublin area at the moment picking up homeless people and bringing them indoors to safety.
- Dublin City Council and DRHE have sourced an additional 200 emergency bed spaces in the Dublin area and have confirmed that there is enough capacity in the system to meet the needs of all who wish to receive shelter.
- In the case of homeless families in hotels, DRHE has advised that hotels are providing food to those families so that they do not need to leave their accommodation.
- Outside of Dublin, homeless individuals and rough sleepers are being transported to facilities using taxi or local authority mini bus services.
- Local authorities and NGOs are working on the streets In Limerick, Cork, Galway, Meath, Kildare, Louth and Wicklow to ensure people have shelter and are transporting homeless individuals to facilities.
Minister Murphy indicated that he will continue to keep matters under review and confirmed that he is making all the required supports and resources available to local authorities to ensure the safety of our homeless and rough sleepers.