Last Night On O’Connell Street


Last night.

On Dublin’s O’Connell Street.

Tom Duffy, a volunteer from Feed Our Homeless, recorded a live Facebook video claiming a woman in her 70s was sleeping outside Starbuck’s and that her son, in his late 30s or early 40s, was “wrapping her up like a baby” for the night.

In the video, Tom said:

“There’s a man, in his, I’d say, mid to late-30s, and he is now, at the moment, wrapping his 74-year-old mother in sleeping bags. And thank God, we had one sleeping bag left. We gave them an extra sleeping bag.

“…He’s tucking his 72, I think he said 72, or 74 years of age, mother. He’s wrapping her up there like a baby. This is 2018 on one of the busiest streets in Ireland. And no one seems to give a continental about it…”

Tom Duffy (Facebook)

33 thoughts on “Last Night On O’Connell Street

  1. Christopher

    No one gives a “continental” because they have their own lives to be getting on with. When I see someone sleeping rough I just assume they didn’t want to/ were not allowed to avail of the many homeless services in Dublin. Good place to sleep is at the intersection of o’connell street and the quays I must say. Comfort was clearly on their minds.

    1. DeKloot

      Now Christie, I hope you sat right up the front for the Priest and everyone one else to see you yesterday. And you said an extra loud Our Fadder and shook everyone’s hand. Because you speak like a true Christian.

          1. realPolithicks

            “Sealioning” is a new one on me Starina, but I looked it up and it actually is a perfect description of this person. Thanks.

  2. Rob_G

    This is very sad. But like Christopher said, there are currently a plethora of hostels and services available so that people don’t have to sleep rough; short of the Gardaí going around and forcibly detaining anyone they find sleeping on the streets, I’m not really sure how a situation like this can be prevented.

    1. Rich Uncle Skeleton

      You’re right, it’s always been like this and it’s like this everywhere and there’s nothing anybody can do. Why bother even trying anything, none of the people will avail of help so why try help them.

      Now excuse me while I tell my local GAA club to stop bothering because somebody has to lose and it may as well be them.

      1. Rep

        Why bother actually giving some options when you can just give a snarky reply instead. You should get a job with the opposition.

    2. Daisy Chainsaw

      It’s safer on the streets than to stay in the hostels.

      Ban AirBnB, reinstate rent allowance instead of the Slumlord Slushfund that is HAP and build public housing on public land.

      1. Rob_G

        All of these are good ideas for solving the housing crisis generally, but if someone’s substance addiction issues are such that they would rather sleep rough than in a dry hostel, I don’t think that an increased rent allowance band is going to permit them to reenter the private renting market in one fell swoop.

        People sleeping rough is a complex problem tied up with mental health and addiction issues; problems that can’t be solved overnight with the passage of a bill into law.

        1. Col

          That may be true. But the issue has been exacerbated significantly by undersupply and ineffective government handling of same.

    3. Ian-O

      As Rich Uncle Skeleton below says, sure what can we do?

      There is literally nothing that can be done so lets not do anything at all, yeah?

      Nothing at all.

      Except perhaps provide secure emergency accomodation where people are not in fear of being robbed or worse, sort out the rental market, build social homes and stuff like that.

      But bless you Rob, as usual you just down play the situation, engage in a bit of victim blaming and profess your ignorance of an issue you seem to enjoy posting about.

      Do us a favour though and can the ”This is very sad”. You couldn’t give a flying fupp about homelessness. Now please tell me how I am a terrible person, because coming from you, its a badge of honour.

      1. Rob_G

        “Except perhaps provide secure emergency accomodation where people are not in fear of being robbed or worse… “

        How will this work in practice – in order to keep the rest of the in the emergency accomodation safe from the thieves and people with mental health issues serious enough that they pose a danger to other people, I presume you would have to exclude them somehow; where would they sleep, then?

        1. Nigel

          Proper care for people with mental health issues would solve at least half the problems you describe, probably more.

          1. Rob_G

            This is true. But, understandably, doctors are usually very reluctant to forcibly commit people, and if a person refuses to engage with mental health services (as a result of their illness), they all too often unfortunately end up on the streets.

          2. Nigel

            Proper mental health care is not automatically a committal. I don’t know how many people refuse to engage with mental health care, but I’m willing to bet it’s a fraction of the number of people who aren’t offered any, or if offered some, it’s not the appropriate treatment, which would only exacerbate the numbers not engaging. This is frustrating, because you seem to think that people horrified at the sight of people sleeping rough aren’t appreciating the logistics of dealing with a lot of homeless people, as opposed to being horrified at the fact that such sights are becoming increasingly commonplace and normal.

          3. Starina

            Fun story: my friend is a volunteer at an HIV clinic in town and has spent a lot of time casually chatting with the service users. She estimates almost 100% of the drug addicts that come in were abused as children. The drugs block out the trauma.

            Proper mental health care in combo with rehabilitation services would do a wonder for this city.

  3. scottser

    if someone of that age has to sleep on the streets, i would suggest they get to an A&E asap and don’t leave until they see the duty social worker who should immediately make an appointment with homeless services.

  4. Ollie Cromwell

    You’ll face up to the problem eventually but by then it will be too late.
    They gotta live somewhere.

    1. millie st murderlark

      Ollie, if you’re going to troll be a darling and do it intelligently. You’re much funnier when you use your brain.

      1. ollie

        Multinationals employing non Irish and paying them 100K+ has driven up rents, should we ban them or is this reserved to those who have no means?

        1. ReproButina

          What multinationals are paying non Irish €100K+? Actually, the nationality is irrelevant. What multinationals have enough employees on €100K+ to cause rent issues?

          1. SOQ

            Only at upper middle managerial and above Lilly and even then not great, certainly not 100k. And as for LinkedIn and Facebook, they I expect are sharing rooms with the Brazilians.

            But sure ‘tech workers’ stealing our flats makes good copy for The Irish Times while they pimp what keeps them afloat.

      2. SOQ

        If he was using his brain he wouldn’t be trolling, he’d be having grown up conversations like the rest of us.

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