A HOUSING CHARITY in Ireland is taking steps to protect potential homeless victims of coronavirus by offering them spaces to self-isolate.
Emergency accommodation, hostels and family hubs, already struggling under the burden of a homelessness crisis in Ireland, are now set to go to even greater lengths to aid those without homes, by setting aside rooms for homeless people to isolate themselves.
Self-isolation is a major challenge for homeless people. Due to the fact that they share spaces in emergency accommodation with others, the chances of spreading disease is high.
Speaking to thejournal.ie, Mike Allen from Focus Ireland insists that coronavirus has worsened what was already quite a dire situation.
"We were in crisis before this came along," he said before adding that it was like "crisis squared".
"If [homeless people] need to self-isolate, it is impossible in their current circumstances to do so," he added.
Allen went on to say that that charities simply can’t scale back "essential services", pointing to the organisation’s daily coffee shop and other day services that provide food and shelter for people who can only access overnight hostels.
Focus Ireland is planning to set aside around 20 housing units that are currently either finished or temporarily vacant if homeless people need to self-isolate.
"We’re trying to hold a certain amount of our housing units, which may be empty, so we will have those available [for people] who might need to self-isolate," Allen said.
Last night, 10 new cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in Ireland - bringing the total to 34.