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Dublin: 20°C Tuesday 15 June 2021

Homeless charity says it doesn't expect to be 'negatively impacted' by Pope's visit

Fears had been expressed in recent days that the traffic restrictions set to be in place in Dublin would negatively impact homeless services in the city.

File Photo SVP is calling on the Government to declare a national emergency over the homeless . End. File photo Source: Eamonn Farrell/Rollingnews.ie

ONE OF IRELAND’S leading homeless charities says, contrary to fears expressed in advance of the papal visit, it is not expecting to have its services impacted by the arrival of Pope Francis.

With Dublin projected to be on severed lockdown for the duration of the Pope’s visit this weekend, it had been suggested that homeless services would struggle to provide the aid that they normally do given the restrictions in place.

Now the Peter McVerry Trust has said it’s ‘confident’ that its services will not be ‘negatively impacted’ by the visit.

“We have been coordinating and preparing our response to the papal visit for the past few weeks and we’ve approached the event in a similar manner to our response to major incidents such as Storm Emma or Storm Ophelia,” said Pat Doyle, CEO of the Trust.

“As we finalised our plans we continue to engage multiple times per day with the DRHE (Dublin Region Homeless Executive) around appropriate response to support needs,” he added.

9492 Leeside Apartments_90547913 Peter McVerry Source: Leah Farrell/Rollingnews.ie

He added that the charity has been engaging with its frontline staff to be sure they will be available this weekend, and that they are aware of all the restrictions that will be in place and will plan their journey accordingly.

He said that the charity’s Housing First Street Intake Team, the Trust’s primary outlet for aiding people sleeping rough, will be operating as normal, and said that gardaí and local authorities had guaranteed it access to “all areas necessary”.

Peter McVerry’s transport vehicles will also be available to help people reach their accommodation over the weekend, particularly those struggling in the face of traffic restrictions to make it to their destination.

At present the Trust is providing emergency homeless services to 750 people and 74 families on a nightly basis.

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