Tuesday, 12 December 2000
Dáil Eireann Debate
260. Mr. Callely asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government further to Parliamentary Question No. 156 of 29 June 2000 on homeless people in Dublin, the level of support services available to homeless people; if some homeless are vulnerable and in need of special supports; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29206/00]
Minister of State at the Department of the Environment and Local Government (Mr. Molloy): While I am aware that health, care and welfare services are provided to homeless persons, information on the level of these support services is not available in my Department. All the services provided to homeless persons by statutory and voluntary agencies fall to be comprehensively reviewed in the action plans which are now required to be prepared at city and county levels under the Government's integrated strategy on homelessness. As part of the development of these plans, all existing services for the homeless will be examined with a view to identifying any service gaps or deficiencies which exist, and putting in place together with appropriate responses to deal with these gaps or deficiencies.
Substantial additional funding has been made available to assist in the delivery of services to the homeless. Capital spending over the next five years is to be doubled from £20 million to £40 million to enable local authorities provide additional suitable accommodation, particularly move-on and sheltered accommodation. Current funding is being increased by £6 million per annum to fund increased payments for the provision of hostel accommodation and to establish settlement and outreach services.
Some homeless people are vulnerable and in need of additional support. In this regard, local authorities and voluntary bodies have been asked to consider, in the context of the action plans, the  need to provide additional transitional and sheltered accommodation to enable homeless persons to move into accommodation that is more suitable to their needs. In addition, a £5 million capital allocation was made available to Dublin Corporation in last year's budget specifically for the provision of two high support hostels for homeless people suffering from drug and alcohol addiction. Dublin Corporation is currently seeking to source suitable premises for these hostels.
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