Sinn Fein spokesperson Justice, Martin Kenny TD, has written to Garda Commissioner Drew Harris seeking clarity on facilities in Garda stations for families seeking emergency accommodation.
The government this week announced an end to the eviction ban which may leave some families with no alternative but to seek emergency accommodation in their local Garda station.
Speaking today, Teachta Kenny said:
“The ending of the eviction ban is happening at a time when emergency accommodation in many areas is at maximum capacity.
“Just this week, South Dublin County Council informed one family that they will have to present at their local Garda station due to the lack of suitable accommodation.
“This is absolutely outrageous. In the months that the eviction ban has been in place, very little has been done by Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien to offer mid-to-long-term solutions for families who are going to be evicted.
“Telling families to present at their local Garda station should not be an option. Across the board we all agree that children bedding down in a station is completely unsuitable.
“This will cause immeasurable distress and trauma to the families involved, but also to the Gardaí who will be doing their best to support the families.
“I have written to the Garda Commissioner to ask for clarity on what facilities or resources will be available to families and the Gardaí supporting them.
“Government are expecting Gardaí – who are already understaffed and overstretched – to care for families who are in an unimaginable situation.
“This is a clear failure of government housing policy which continues to favour big developers and institutional landlords.
“Garda stations act as places of safety for victims of crime, and places of detention for criminals. A station cannot become an emergency accommodation hub because government has failed to provide safe and secure housing for workers and families.”