Review highlights the importance of an intercultural approach to the provision
of Traveller accommodation where Traveller culture and identity is respected,”
said Ronnie Fay, Co Director, Pavee Point.
The COVID-19 pandemic
has shown that accommodation can be a life or death issue. Poor living conditions and severe
overcrowding contribute significantly to Travellers who get COVID-19 having higher risks of ending
up in hospital, going to ICU and death compared to the general population. “We need to
future proof Traveller accommodation in case of future pandemics and we need to
press for a complete resolution of the accommodation situation for Travellers,”
said Ms. Fay.
Review raises important practical issues that we know are impacting on the
provision of Traveller accommodation –
spending on refurbishment and renovation instead of new accommodation
lack of forward planning for actual and future Traveller accommodation needs
protracted issues with residents from the majority population
local authority planning issues
report also recognises that Travellers are, in reality, being forced into
social housing as Traveller specific accommodation is overcrowded and lacks
facilities. This is assimilation and goes against the principles of equality,”
said Ms. Fay.
review also highlights that the issue of Traveller homelessness is largely
overlooked by local authorities and that local authorities do not factor in
culture and identity for an effective response to Traveller homelessness.
authorities have a responsibility and a public sector duty to ensure that they
are achieving equality in their service provision,” said Ronnie Fay, Co
Director, Pavee Point. “From this Review
we can see there is a need for new initiatives to take account of Traveller
ethnicity in the management of Traveller specific accommodation, the provision
of standard housing and in the provision of homeless supports.“
imminent mid-term review of Traveller Accommodation Programmes 2019 – 2024 must
now be revised to include the recommendations in this Review to strengthen
delivery of Traveller accommodation under Housing Circular 03/2020, to address
Traveller ethnicity in local authority service provision and to implement
Public Sector Duty requirements.