No Fixed Abode is a group exhibition of donated homeless-themed works in aid of the Peter McVerry Trust at Copper House Gallery, Saint Kevins Cottages, Synge Street, Dublin 8 running until December 22.
In The Copper House Gallery, we are holding a special Christmas launch on Wednesday, December 6 to encourage people to come along and support the great and essential work of The Peter McVerry Trust by buying an original piece of art.
Over 120 artists have donated their pieces to the exhibition and 100% of the proceeds go to The Peter McVerry Trust. All the works are priced to sell with some well known names. There is a style and a price range to suit everyone so this year why not give the gift of original art?
You can check a name off your Christmas list, support original Irish artists and raise funds that go directly to combat the escalating homelessness crisis. If you can make it to the launch on the 6th December, you can do it all with a Christmas beverage in hand!
An evening with homelessness activist Peter McVerry’ including a screening of the documentary Peter McVerry: A View From The Basementand a chat with Fintan O’Toole at the Light House Cinema starting at 6.30pm.
Peter McVerry at the launch of the Action Plan on Homelessness last month
….Fr Peter McVerry wants to get back to the 80s, where we were building up to 8,000 “social houses” every year. Why? Does he see home ownership as a bad thing? Why else would he be so in favour of inflating the “social housing” market – property that would forever remain in the state’s hands?
The British Left never forgave Thatcher for “right to buy,” which allowed the low income to buy their council houses. Private property being the original sin of the Left, this broke the chains that bound many of Britain’s poorer with the powerful state. US broadcaster Dennis Prager says “the bigger the state, the smaller the citizen,” and that’s what gets Leftists votes.
We entirely sympathise with people on short-term leases, who can see a hike in their rent down the road. But what do you expect with such an appallingly regulated sector? Landlords are only in that favourable position due to that tired but true term: supply-and-demand.
If the stock of housing were to keep up with demand, no landlord could afford to lose good, reliable tenants; longer-term leases, with rent freezes, would be a competitive advantage as landlords sought the best tenants. (And, given that we rate tradesmen, teachers and restaurants online, why not throw in a website that rates tenants?)
The market rate is, after all, contingent on what the state will allow it to be, reflective of land zoning, planning permission, and a plethora of costly regulations.
Alas, I dare say, many of McVerry’s supporters would be the same type of people who would turn their noses up at a block of apartments being built in their neighbourhood.
Of course McVerry is correct on many points; relative to wages, housing is stupidly expensive in Ireland. But the solutions are not so forthcoming.
Releasing state-controlled land; building taller buildings to make better use of acreage and afford us the density of population required to make quality public transport possible; tackling the cost of grossly inflated agricultural land – all of these solutions are actively fought by progressives.
You can’t have a competitive property market and an 19th Century idyll at the same time, folks.
We need sustainable solutions here. We need tough, open discussions. We need accurate figures. McVerry’s is not the only voice in this debate.
A meeting of the Oireachtas Committee on Housing and Homelessness today
The committee will be fully aware that there are in excess of 6,000 people in homelessness across Ireland, of whom 2,000 are children. In addition to the family homeless emergency there over 3,000 adults with no dependents in homeless services nationally.
Individuals, and indeed couples, face enormous challenges in accessing housing. The people that Peter McVerry Trust supports can often be excluded by mainstream social housing providers. Inadequate housing provision and housing supports mean that it is single individuals who face the longest wait for housing and the greatest risk of damage and institutionalisation by the system.
Despite the deepening emergency across Ireland there are only 5 counties where there are more than 100 people in homelessness.
However, the situation is shifting dramatically. For example, in Kildare the numbers in homelessness has doubled since January 1st. In Tipperary the figure has gone from 4 individuals to 54 individuals in just 3 months. In Dublin there are, on average, 8 new adult presentations per day.
From the Peter McVerry Trust’s opening statement to the Oireachtas Committee on Housing and Homelessness this morning.
‘Moving on’ is a short film that tells the story of two young people in homelessness and follows them as they prepare to move into their own homes.These new homes were former local authority voids, vacant for a number of years, which were then renovated by Peter McVerry Trust with funding from [building material firm] Saint Gobain Ireland. The project resulted in 6 apartments for people in homeless services.
Dublin City Councillor Tina MacVeigh, of People Before Profit, top, at Dublin City Council meeting last night
Dublin City Councillor Éilis Ryan, of the Workers’ Party, writes:
“Last night Dublin City Councillors guillotined through, without debate, three emergency motions supporting the building of modular housing and the suspension of normal planning and procurement procedures in order to do this.”
“Fine Gael, Labour and Sinn Fein refused to allow debate on the motions, and refused requests to hold an emergency meeting to allow proper discussion of this critical issue. Modular housing should certainly be considered as part of overall attempts to address the housing crisis; but not by making those who are currently homeless even more vulnerable by rushing through ill-thought-out proposals.”
Meanwhile, on Berkeley Street, Dublin 7…
The Peter McVerry Trust has opened Ireland’s first youth café for children and young people who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless.
Francis Doherty, of the Peter McVerry Trust, writes:
“We have produced a new infographic that looks at our cold weather initiative during winter 13/14. Weather figures are for Dublin city because it is the location for majority of rough sleepers in Ireland.”