A mother and her three children are facing eviction on Christmas week after their landlord gave them three months to quit the rented house so he can move in family members.
Cork City councillor Mick Finn (Ind) said the family, who have been living in the private rented house in the Blackrock area as tenants under the rental accommodation scheme (RAS), are facing into an emergency shelter unless they can find a council house or other rental accommodation in time.
The mother has been an RAS tenant in the house for four years and has been paying a differential rent to the council which, in turn, makes payments to the landlord.
But the landlord has given her and her family three months to leave because he said he plans to move family members into the property.
Mr Finn said the case underlines the urgent need for emergency legislation to protect tenants struggling against the backdrop of a chronic social housing crisis and soaring rents.
“Some sort of ruling must be introduced to stop or, at least, halt the ability of landlords to just throw families and individuals out of their homes to get more rent,” he said.
Mr Finn called on Housing Minister Simon Coveney to introduce emergency legislation to prevent landlords from compounding the housing crisis by introducing a moratorium on notice periods for at least 12 months.
“I admire the way Minister Coveney has approached the housing crisis but I firmly believe that we need actions that will start to solve the problem today and not next year.
“Any short-term limiting measure imposed on landlords can be gradually rescinded once the social and affordable housing market grows as needed.”
Meanwhile, Cork City Council, which placed more than 400 people in emergency shelter accommodation in June and July, has advertised on the Government’s e-tenders website for temporary emergency accommodation to provide a minimum of 12 beds.
The appropriate facility should be able to cater for families and single people who find themselves in need of temporary emergency accommodation, state the tender documents.
The beds will be used exclusively for people referred by the council through its central placement system.
The documents say the facility must be equipped so that residents can provide their own breakfast and have a day room available to them, preferably with a TV. The property must also be made available to residents throughout the day.
New figures presented to city councillors on Monday show the council placed 345 people in emergency accommodation in May, but the figure surged to 412 in June and again in July. The figure includes 25 families and 69 children — three times more than the same period last year.
It prompted calls from councillors for more outreach workers to help the city’s homeless.
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