Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Support the Make Room Campaign, ending homelessness in Ireland by 2010

I'm delighted that the Labour Party has formally backed the Make Room campaign, launched recently by some of our major voluntary organisations dealing with the homeless. The organisations include Simon, one of the first charity organisations I became aware of. It also includes Focus Ireland, the other voluntary body doing work with young homeless people in particular , and set up by that indomitable Kerrywoman, Sr. Stanislaus Kennedy. Stan, as she's known, spent a lot of time in Kilkenny where the late Bishop Birch was pioneering the Catholic church's social development structure.
The other two groups are the Saint Vincent de Paul charity, who have a presence in every parish in the country, and finally the Threshold group who have done so much to advance the rights of tenants. Please take the time to sign up and pledge your support to the campaign now, and try to make homelessness a thing of the past by 2010.
From my own experience, the problem of sub-standard private rented accomodation is becoming worse, and the failure of both our own local authorities and central Government to register and inspect this type of accomodation is a local and national disgrace. Of course, building social and affordable housing is the real answer to homelessness, particularly for young people, who are increasingly being forced to live at home with their parents until well into their twenties.

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