Homelessness

Homelessness: Shouldn't We Just Look After 'Our Own'?

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When it comes to housing, most of us just want to sort everyone out because everyone needs a home regardless of who they are. However, occasionally an issue is raised about who the homeless are:

'Are all the homeless people Irish? And if so how can the government find houses for the refugees coming into Ireland and not their own people?'

There are lots of people in high places who benefit from us thinking that the reason for homelessness in Ireland is refugees and other migrants. Or that these people are causing 'us' a big problem. It's understandable why some people believe that, after all the media spreads this message constantly, but it's just not accurate.

Better to Squat Than Let Homes Rot

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On the merits of Squatting as a tactical response to the permanent housing crisis.

 

A world to change in 2016

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We awake to news that more towns in Ireland are under water due to storm flooding. And that perhaps the sea ice at the north pole might melt due to temperatures rising above zero. The first story is given a lot more prominence in Irish media than the second but strangely at the same time another story is being celebrated. The start of yet more greenhouse gases being pumped out of their safe place far below the sea off the Irish shore to be processed and then released into the atmosphere via the Corrib refinery.

An attempt to liberate a vacant council flat for a homeless mother and her children

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Myself and some comrades were approached by a young mother from Coolock that recently became homeless. The woman and her children became homeless a few weeks previous. While her kids are in school during the day the mother either walks the streets or calls into friends or family member’s homes. When school has ended for the day they have to rely on family and friends to let them stay in their homes. Sometimes the mother has to split her children up so that she’d definitely have a roof over all her kid’s heads for the night.

She had to leave the house she was renting because of the condition the house was in. She went to Dublin City Council (DCC) and because of the advice given to her by the council she registered herself as being homeless. She asked the council to be put up in one of the state’s homeless hostels or money for a hotel room or a B&B. She was told there is no more spaces left in the hostels, but the council would give her money for a hotel room or B&B. The young mother spent days then weeks trying to get a room in a hotel or B&B that would be suitable for her and her children, but to no avail. She had to survive from the good will of her friends and family.

Politicians & Bosses Lie as it Turns Out There Are 300,000 Empty Houses in Ireland

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Homelessness in Ireland could be solved at a stroke by allowing people without homes to move into the 302,602 empty houses in the country.

That figure comes from the National Institute of Regional and Spatial Analysis. It's the equivalent of half the homes in Dublin, many of the vacants being in ghost estates that developers have been deliberately allowing to fall apart.

The Housing Crisis is Really a Capitalist Crisis - Resist, Repopulate, Reclaim!

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Ours is a society in which, in every field, one group of people makes decisions, exercise control, limits choices, while the great majority have to accept these decisions, submit to this control and act within the limits of these externally imposed choices. Nowhere is this more evident than in the field of housing: one of those basic human needs which throughout history and all over the world people have satisfied as well as they could for themselves, using the materials what were at hand and their own, and their neighbors labor. The marvelously resourceful anonymous vernacular architecture of every part of the globe is a testimony to their skill, using timber, straw, grass, leaves, hides, stone, clay, bone, earth, mud sand even snow. Consider the igloo: maximum enclosure of space with minimum of labor. Cost of materials and transportation, nil. And all made of water. Nowadays, of course, the Eskimos live on welfare handouts in little northern slums. Man, as Habraken says “no longer houses himself: he is housed” – Colin Ward

 

Capitalism in Ireland: Many of Us Have No Home, a Few Have 500+

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Thank's to the unpopular property tax we at least know slightly more about the super wealthy in Ireland. The government is normally very careful to neither collect information about this group nor to publish it in a way that would reveal the enormous gap in wealth and power between us and them. It would not do to have Joe or Josephine Worker realise that they could work for 10,000 years and still never approach the wealth of the Denis O'Briens.

 

The housing crisis in Ireland - 8 points on the big picture

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The WSM has been having a 'big picture' discussion around the housing crisis from which the following points emerged. We are publishing them ahead of the December 1st demonstration in Dublon (14.00 Parnell square).

1. We built our cities and the houses of our cities. They are ours, not to slave in, but to master and to own*.

2. The contemporary crisis of capitalism has made markedly visible the relationship between finance capital and property speculation, between the concentrated money-power of bankers and speculators and the shaping of the built environment in our towns and cities.

Housing is a Human Right march attracts thousands

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Saturday 7th April saw 3000 people take to the streets of Dublin for the Housing is a Human Right march. Some 10,000 people are in emergency accommodation, 3700 of them children.  Meanwhile landlords & property speculators pocket a massive portion of the wages of those who are working either via rent or if post 2000 'homeowners' through massive morgage payments.

Irish Housing Network aid residents threatened with eviction in Offaly

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Members of the Kildare branch of the Irish Housing Network were invited to attend a meeting in Tullamore 9th September  by concerned residents of 'Lann Elo', a facility. Five members of Housing Action Kildare (IHN), two local Offaly county councillors, one Fianna Fail TD and one Sinn Fein TD were in attendance, along with eight residents.

Eight residents and a number of young children were advised in writing on 23rd August that they had to be out of the facility by 6th October or their cases may be referred to the Residential Tenancies Board. This caused a great deal of unnecessary stress for residents, especially those with young children as they did not know what this process would entail.

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