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06/12/2017

Homeless Woman Found Dead In Cork City

The body of a woman has been discovered in Cork city.

It is understood the woman was a rough sleeper and her body was found at about 11am on Lower Oliver Plunkett Street today, 06 December.

She was pronounced dead at the scene and a post-mortem examination is due to be carried out.

Gardaí have said they are not currently treating the death as suspicious but an investigation is underway.

Inner City Helping Homeless said it is the third death of a rough sleeper within the last week.

Posting to their Facebook page, the group said: "Yet another person with a name, a family and a story that died alone on the streets of our country. This cannot be allowed to continue, how many more human beings have to die before the government call a National Homeless Emergency. We have continuously warned that we would have more deaths on the streets if immediate emergency action isn't taken. With snow due later this week we fear this isn't the last death we will see before Christmas."

The group's Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Flynn, added: "This death is another indictment on the lack of service provision being provided by the State. Homeless services are in turmoil with extra beds not coming online quickly enough, we have weather warnings throughout the country and rough sleeping is at peak levels. We require an immediate response or we will have more deaths on our streets. ICHH would like to offer our sincere condolences to the deceased lady and her family and friends."

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has offered his condolences to the family and friends of the homeless woman.

Deputy Ó Broin said: "We do not have the full details of the case yet. However, this is now the eighth person who has died while sleeping rough in Dublin, Drogheda, Cork, and Bray over the past thirteen weeks. This now includes three people in one week.

"We do not wish to politicise this latest untimely death. Unfortunately however, it is a political issue.

"The current government approach to tackling homelessness is not working. It has yet to explain why only 600 of the 1,800 turnkey properties offered for sale to Government are being purchased?

"These are properties that are ready to move in to and the government is reluctant to acquire them, despite funding not being an issue.

"I raised this issue directly with Minister Eoghan Murphy in Committee yesterday and with Minister Damian English during a Dáil debate on homelessness last week.

"More of these units could have been bought to get homeless families and individuals out of emergency accommodation and into permanent secure homes, which is current government policy.

"I will be raising the issue again with Minister Murphy tomorrow."

(MH/LM)

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