Homelessness Committee proposals show Traveller accommodation is part of the homelessness crisis and displays a much needed positive approach to improving living conditions for Irish Travellers,  according to Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Centre.

 We are delighted the Committee echoes our calls for a moratorium on evictions, Traveller accommodation implementation mechanisms to include Travellers and increased funding.

 “A ban on Traveller evictions is essential to easing the hardship and disadvantage that 360 Traveller families living on the side of the road face,” said Ronnie Fay, Pavee Point Co Director on today’s report of the Oireachtas Committee on Housing and Homelessness.

 “A Housing Procurement Agency that includes Travellers, as recommended, would be a step forward and give a new impetus to solve the Traveller accommodation crisis which is now seen as part of the ‘national emergency’ the Committee states is homelessness today. ”

 “This Committee wants a new agency to ensure the implementation of Traveller Accommodation Plans and in this acknowledges the lack of commitment to the provision of Traveller accommodation in some local authorities.”

 “We agree that funding needs to go back to pre-recession levels and highlight that local authorities need to be held responsible for not spending their funds on planned Traveller accommodation.”

 In Pavee Point’s submission to the Oireachtas Committee Ms. Fay pointed out that Government’s statistics obscure the reality of homelessness within the Traveller community:

 “We estimate that 5,500, or 18.6%, of the Traveller population are in effect homeless but they are excluded from Government statistics on homelessness.  Using Census 2011 figures, this would be the equivalent of 853,415 of the general population in need of housing.”

Further Information:

Pavee Point Opening Statement to Oireachtas Committee

Pavee Point full statement to Oireachtas Committee

Oireachtas Housing and Homelessness Report