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Speaking at the launch of the Government’s Homelessness Policy Statement, Minister for Housing and Planning Jan O’Sullivan has announced that 2016 is the target for ending long-term homelessness in Ireland.

The Minister also announced details of the oversight group that will review the progress achieved in tackling homelessness.  The group consists of Mark Kennedy, who will also serve as Chair of the group, along with Sylda Langford and Tony Fahey.

In addition to setting 2016 as the target for ending long-term homelessness the Homelessness Policy Statement also puts the housing-led philosophy at the centre of policy in this area. Explainng this, the Minister said: “The idea behind the policy is that people are provided with long-term, stable housing as early as possible.  It moves away from the traditional ‘staircase’ model which sees individuals and families move between various stages, including emergency accomodation, before eventually securing an appropriate place.” 

“The housing-led approach has the capacity to assist people break the cycle of poverty and homelessness by providing them with stability and security.  Providing them with additional support to sustain their tenancies is also a critical part of the approach.  By moving away from over-reliance on expensive emergency accomodation the “housing-led” strategy can also provide better value for the significant amount of public money invested in homeless services.”