Travellers are most at risk of being homeless – says ESRI and Human Rights Commission Report

Pavee Point welcomes today’s report by the ESRI and IHREC which shows that Travellers are the most at risk of being homeless.

According to ‘Discrimination and Inequality in Housing in Ireland’ Travellers make up 9% of the homeless population although Travellers make up just 1% of the overall population.

Travellers also experience the highest levels of discrimination, according to the report.

“Travellers are almost ten times as likely to report discrimination in access to housing as the White Irish population, even after

education and labour market status are held constant,” the report states.

“This is more independent evidence of the impacts of discrimination on Travellers” said Martin Collins Pavee Point Co Director.

“Travellers have been largely invisible in the homeless crisis as our community struggles to cope with continued lack of provision.

This has resulted in severe overcrowding, homelessness and pursuant health issues.”

“Lack of accommodation is causing severe hardship in our community,” said Martin Collins “And this is impacting on our overall health.

This is getting worse as Traveller families are being forced out of private rented accommodation.”

“The fact that the report shows that other ethnic minorities such as Black people experience high levels of discrimination shows the impact

of racism and discrimination in blocking people having a decent place to live.”

The latest local authority count of Traveller families (2016) shows that 532 Traveller families are being left to live on unauthorised sites – on the side of the road; 170 families are in basic service sites without proper access to sanitation and electricity and 862 families are sharing houses.

The figures also show there was a 10% decrease between 2015 and 2016 in the number of Traveller families in private rented accommodation.

“Housing Minister, Eoghan Murphy TD has promised an independent review of the Traveller Accommodation Act 1998, “ said Mr. Collins

“This research shows how urgent it is to have this review as soon as possible.”