A Dublin city councillor is calling for those who use emergency accommodation to be charged for the service.
Independent councillor Ruairi McGinley says people who use hotels and B&Bs should have to pay between €20 and €50 a week.
Mr McGinley said: "They're putting people in hotels and B&Bs and not charging them a cent. What do you think is going to happen in that situation? Word gets out.
"If they find out there's free accommodation - now they're taking a chance, half the accommodation mightn't be what you like but half of it is. And if you find something suitable you get to stay there free of charge.
"A certain number are [scamming the system] and this has been going on for a number of years. I pointed this out at least three years ago to council officials when Simon Coveney was (housing) minister and the council officials were told by the department that they couldn't charge."
Councillor Christy Burke has called on him to withdraw his comments.
Mr McGinley said everybody should have to pay something.
He said: "I think it'll avoid a situation where certain accommodation is being charged for and another isn't, which is an inequity in the system.
"I think if there is no charge it will encourage some people who are financially vulnerable to accept accommodation on the basis that there is a significant cost saving, in particular if people are in accommodation for a period of between six months and two years."
- Digital Desk