Dublin’s Lord Mayor and Peter McVerry Trust call upon protesters to stop blockade at Baile na Laochra Ballymun Modular Homes site
If the current protest being held at the Baile na Laochra Modular Homes site in Poppintree, Ballymun continues, 22 families will remain in unsuitable accommodation in commercial hotels for the Christmas and into early 2016.
The four Dublin Local Authorities, An tArdmhéara Críona Ní Dhálaigh and the Peter McVerry Trust are asking the protesters to stop obstructing building works on the site and enter into constructive discussion with Dublin City Council.
The contract was awarded to Western Building Systems following an Accelerated Restricted Procedure (ARP) to provide homes in recognition of the extreme urgency to respond to family homelessness in the Dublin region.
In the week 19th to 25th October 2015 there were 677 families in all forms of emergency accommodation (including 1,425 child dependents). Of these 677 families, 216 including 450 child dependents, were in emergency homeless accommodation and 461 families, including 975 child dependents, were in hotels.
According to an tArdmhéara Críona Ní Dhálaigh, “ I respect everyone's right to peacefully protest but I would like to echo Fr Mc Verry's call and ask these protesters to allow the building work to commence at Baile na Laochra to allow for the construction of 22 homes for those people living in completely unsustainable and unsuitable temporary emergency accommodation."
Peter McVerry Trust, in a press statement released earlier today said that, “People know that we are in the middle of an acute housing emergency. The response to that emergency is the rapid delivery of housing to those in B & Bs, Hotels, and homeless services. The pace at which modular housing can be delivered, together with the high quality finish and its cost effective nature mean that Peter McVerry Trust is fully supportive of modular housing. We would urge the protesters to engage with Dublin City Council in constructive dialogue in the correct forum to resolve any issues they may have. This process can take place alongside the construction process which will keep the project on time and deliver these homes as quickly as possible. The bottom line is that the 22 families need homes before Christmas. The homeless sector also needs every other unit of housing we can secure before then to give as many people as possible a new start this Christmas.”
Dublin City Council plans to deliver a further 131 modular homes during 2016 on a number of other sites including Mourne Road in Drimnagh, Belcamp Avenue in Coolock, St Helena's drive in Finglas and Cherry Orchard in Ballyfermot.
Illustrations of the proposed modular homes at Poppintree are available to view here