Dublin homeless services at capacity as winter approaches, warns charity

Dublin homeless services at capacity as winter approaches, warns charity

A leading charity has today warning that homeless services in Dublin are full, as winter approaches.

Merchants Quay Ireland also said that there was an increase in demand for all of its services for homeless people and people with drug addiction last year.

Its annual report shows it provided 80,000 meals in 2014, demand for its GP service increased by a quarter, and needle exchange interventions in Dublin increased by 6%.

The number of inmates in prison seeking help with addiction also increased by almost one-fifth.

Merchants Quay CEO Tony Geoghegan said that people are becoming trapped in the cycle of homelessness and drugs.

"There's been an enmeshment over the last number of years between drugs and homelessness, and that has been exacerbated recently - with all the issues around the private rental market and raising rents," he said.

"We have serious difficulties when people do actually engage in treatment and they go through detox or rehabilitation programme, and they end up back either on the streets or in emergency accommodation.

"There's a whole circle that goes on there."

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