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Homelessness is our most serious equality challenge

Published: Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Orla O’Connor, Director of NWCI has called the homeless and housing crisis “our most serious equality challenge”.

Orla O’Connor continued, “This crisis is a women’s issue, it’s having a particularly devastating impact on lone-parent families, the majority of whom are led by women.  The women and children are forced out of the private rental market and into precarious living situations that have a detrimental impact on their health and lives.”

Women make up a far higher percentage of the homeless population in Ireland (44%) compared to other European countries, where the figures are much lower, at typically 20-33%. Official figures also may not represent the full extent of the problem, as women tend to engage more in invisible forms of homelessness. This means that women are more likely to stay with friends and family. Current figures also do not include the many women and children living in domestic violence refuges or residing in direct provision centres.

Orla O’Connor concluded “Urgent action is required and NWCI is calling on Government to change its policy and focus on increasing social housing stock and ensure security for those in in the private rented sector. It is vital that the feminisation of homelessness is addressed through dedicated research and data. We urge Government to provide resources to gender proof all homeless and social housing strategies and budgets. This is why NWCI is joining the Raise the Roof rally today in what we hope will be a resounding call for immediate action on this critical women’s issue.”


For more information, please contact Silke Paasche, Head of Communications, Tel. 085 858 9104, silkep@nwci.ie