Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Questions (998, 999, 1002)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

998. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the extent to which his Department has examined the local authority housing waiting lists with a view to devising a system to address the situation of young families becoming homeless; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24300/19]

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Bernard Durkan

Question:

999. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the extent to which provision is readily available to meet the housing needs of single men or women who may be homeless or become so in view of their circumstances; the extent to which schemes in operation are capable of addressing these issues; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24301/19]

View answer

Bernard Durkan

Question:

1002. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if an emergency housing programme will be introduced to combat the threat of homelessness nationally; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24304/19]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 998, 999 and 1002 together.

In 2016, the Government published the Rebuilding Ireland Action Plan on Housing and Homelessness.  Rebuilding Ireland is designed to significantly increase the supply of social housing by 50,000, double the output of overall housing to at least 25,000 homes per annum by 2021, service all tenure types (social, private and rental), and tackle homelessness comprehensively.  The Plan is underpinned by over €6 billion in funding.  

While the realisation of these objectives will provide the ultimate solution to addressing housing supply issues, my Department also recognises the need for short-term emergency measures to address issues of homelessness and is providing capital funding to local authorities to provide emergency accommodation, to ensure that there is sufficient shelter for all who require it.  The Government has increased the budget available to local authorities to deliver homeless services to €146m in 2019, an increase of over 25% on the 2018 allocation.  Local authorities and their service delivery partners work with households experiencing homelessness to identify and secure exits from emergency accommodation to independent tenancies.  In 2018, 5,135 adults exited homelessness to a tenancy. 

The allocation of social housing support is a matter for each individual local authority in accordance with the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009, and associated regulations. Section 22 of the Act requires each local authority to make an allocation scheme determining the order of priority to be accorded in the allocation of dwellings to households qualified for social housing support and to households approved for a transfer, the allocation of which would, in the opinion of the authority, meet the accommodation needs and requirements of the households.  The making of such a scheme is a reserved function of a local authority.