Leo Varadkar pays tribute to those working on Christmas Day in Ireland

Leo Varadkar pays tribute to those working on Christmas Day in Ireland

TAOISEACH LEO VARADKAR has spoken of how grateful he is to the thousands of Irish men and women working on Christmas Day.

He added that he would be thinking of all those hard on work on the 25th all around the country.

"A lot of people need to work Christmas Day for lots of reasons. I am grateful that they do," Varadkar said.

"I’ll be doing something on Christmas Day but I’m not ready to talk about that."

Mr Varadkar went on to say that, in the midst of Ireland's homelessness challenges, the government would be doing their very best to ensure that anyone who needed shelter received it.

He said that in the last 12 months, 20,000 new homes and apartments had built in order to tackle the issue, and the target for 2020 was to be build 25,000 more.

"There will be 20,000 families around the table on Christmas Day in a home that didn’t exist a year ago," he added.

Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy has said the Government had introduced rental reforms and is increasing and expanding wrap-around supports in homeless family hubs, according to the Irish Examiner.

Earlier this year he said. "Rents are too high but we are increasing supports, which is showing results.”

Mr Murphy survived a vote of no confidence in the Dáil earlier this year, staving off an early General Election.

Fianna Fáil abstained in the vote as part of the confidence and supply agreement but has renewed its attack on the Government’s record on tackling homelessness.

Recently the tally of homeless people increased to more than 10,000.