The HSE has been Accused of Refusing to Open its Vacant Buildings to Rough Sleepers


Independent Cllr Noel Collins said the health board could handover its empty and unused buildings to voluntary housing groups.
He said by doing so, buildings such as Sarsfield Court near Glanmire, Rusbrooke Convent and Midleton home could be converted into night shelters for the homeless.
Cllr Collins condemned the Health Service Executive and Minister for Housing Eoin Murphy for their lack of imagination, empathy and compassion in responding to the housing crisis.
He said they must “open their eyes to the reality of the homeless situation, remove the padlocks from empty properties and help ease the pain and suffering.”
The Midleton based Cllr a volunteer with the Simon community said it is virtually impossible to find accommodation for the homeless.
“If the victim arrives early in the day to you, there is some hope of shelter. But late at night it is impossible, resulting from the housing crisis.”
Cllr Collins claims come just days after another homeless sleeper lost their life on a Cork City Street.
The body of a 53 year old man was discovered by a passer-by on Wandesford Quay close to Washington Street, Cork City on Sunday 18 March.
This brings the number of homeless deaths on Cork streets to 2 so far this year.
On the 4 March the body of a man also in his 50’s was discovered close to the old Blackrock road drug taking paraphernalia was found in the area at the time.
Homeless figures are set to break the 10,000 mark shortly as those working in homeless services say the number of rough sleepers is worsening as the year progresses
The HSE say they will consider Cllr Collins proposal but state its “Cork County Council who in the first instance determines housing need in the area.”