News & Media

Full eviction ban must be reinstated as homelessness figures rise

28 May 2021

Statement by Senator Rebecca Moynihan
Seanad Leader and spokesperson on Housing, Local Government and Heritage
  • Rise of 12 homeless families from March to 925.
  • 27 additional children now homeless meaning 2,193 children are without a home.
  • Evictions are the primary cause of homelessness.

With the homeless figures for April recording an increase of people without a home, Labour Housing spokesperson Rebecca Moynihan has called for the for the re-instalment of the eviction ban, to be extended into the end of the year, to address the insecurity in accommodation that still exist as a result of Covid.

Senator Moynihan said:

“The figures published today show a clear need to reinstate and extend the eviction ban to protect the most vulnerable families in society. A further 12 families are homeless, and the number of children without a home has increased by 27. In Dublin alone, 699 families are without a home. Despite record funding the government’s policies aren’t working because the primary cause of homelessness is evictions and the Minister won’t act comprehensively.

“Quite simply, these figures are a sign that the Government’s housing strategy is destined to fail ordinary people once again. What is so tragic about this is that children are being caught up in this failure. Labour highlighted that the relaxation of rules around eviction would make a significant difference but the Fianna Fáil Minister has continued the failed approach of his Fine Gael predecessor.

“We will now see homelessness figures creeping up month by month again. Most people who enter homelessness come from the private rental market. With news of a Government loophole that could see rents increase by 8% in July, I am gravely worried for renters. We already have a real issue with affordability in the rental sector. An 8% increase in rents will push many renters into desperate situations.

“The Minister needs to ensure renters are adequately protected into next year as the economy recovers and people get back to work. It’s time to freeze rents until more supply comes on stream and give renters a much-needed break.

“Instead of giving the same old response, the Government has to act with the sense of urgency this crisis demands.”