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Is emergency accommodation up to scratch? A new campaign wants to ask homeless people

The Dublin Inquirer is crowdfunding a customer-satisfaction survey.

Emergency Beds for homeless people set up ahead of Storm Emma.
Emergency Beds for homeless people set up ahead of Storm Emma.
Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

A DUBLIN NEWSPAPER has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for a customer-satisfaction survey of homeless people who use emergency accommodation.

Anecdotally, some people sleeping rough in the capital have stated that they choose to sleep on the streets rather than rely on emergency accommodation.

Emergency beds in homeless hostels are generally reserved by calling a freephone number for the Central Placement Service but the system does not offer much certainty.

Users also have to leave in the morning, something that can create problems in developing stability or if an individual is unwell.

There have also been complaints that alcohol and drug use are prevalent in some emergency hostels making them unsuitable for homeless people who may have addiction problems.

While many of these complaints have been aired previously, local newspaper the Dublin Inquirer is attempting to fund quantitative research on the topic.

The paper’s deputy editor Sam Tranum said the idea came in part from Fr Peter McVerry who prevously stated that such a satisfaction survey “would be devastating”.

We’re going to try to do the first such survey ever in Dublin. We hope these results would provide valuable information to policymakers, and perhaps to the Dublin Region Homeless Executive itself, that could help make things a little better for people who are having a hard time and are forced to rely on these services.

Tranum says that Amárach Research has quoted the Dublin Inquirer €2,250 to carry out the survey and that this is the amount they’re trying to reach.

The newspaper’s website has details about contributing to the appeal and says that part of the thinking is to find out whether there are “just a handful of people who’ve had bad experiences, or whether there are systemic problems”.

It’s planned that 150 homeless people will be surveyed as part of the research.

Read: Ronan is five years old and has to share a bed with his mother in his grandparents’ house >

Read: Dublin City Council proposing to stop prioritising homeless families for housing lists >

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Rónán Duffy

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