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Thousands of children were homeless at Christmas. While the latest figures released by the Department of Housing show a welcome decrease in family homelessness in December 2018, 3,559 children spent Christmas without a home of their own.
Dublin, 30 January 2019 – Thousands of children were homeless at Christmas. While the latest figures released by the Department of Housing show a welcome decrease in family homelessness in December 2018, 3,559 children spent Christmas without a home of their own.
June Tinsley, Head of Advocacy, Barnardos said: “A decrease in child homelessness in December is to be expected, as extended family and friends rally round to ensure children don’t have to spend Christmas in emergency accommodation. The number of children homeless in December 2018 is 42% higher than December 2016. Homelessness is not something any child should experience. It is not acceptable.
“We know the harm being caused to children who experience homelessness. Last week Temple Street Children’s Hospital raised concerns it has over the number of children accessing its Emergency Department who were experiencing homelessness, many of whom presented with injuries or illness associated with their poor living situation. But there are many other hidden effects of homelessness on children. Even a short experience of homelessness will impact on a child’s emotional, health and social wellbeing. What we are seeing unfold over the course of the housing crisis are children being faced with a highly stressful experience in their lives.
“Government has within its gift the ability to solve this crisis and ensure these children don’t spend another Christmas in homeless accommodation; the question is will they take the bold steps needed?”