Peter McVerry Trust, the national housing and homeless charity, has welcomed the additional funding awarded to housing, homelessness as well as funding of measures in the areas of education, justice and social inclusion.
Pat Doyle, the charity’s CEO said there were a number of key areas where additional funding would help support vulnerable individuals across society.
Funding for Housing for All
“We welcome the commitment within Budget 2022 to provide €6 billion to enable the delivery of more social and affordable housing. We also welcome the Croí Cónaithe fund to help service sites and refurbish properties in towns and villages. There are near endless opportunities to re-use vacant buildings in urban centres to provide housing options for people across the housing spectrum. Introducing an additional incentive to existing schemes will see more homes delivered and fewer derelict homes and sites in town centres.
“The zoned land tax will also help deal with the issue of vacant sites in town centres, specifically with the removal of any threshold as regards site sizes. This means any site that can be used for housing will be subject to this tax. While we recognise that the tax is some way off a signal has ben sent to landholders and that will see greater activity on vacant sites and perhaps more sites coming to market to allow Approved Housing Bodies and Councils to secure them for future housing delivery.
“Unfortunately, one item that was expected to be included in this budget is progressing the vacant homes tax and its absence from today’s budget is disappointing.”
Pat Doyle, CEO of Peter McVerry Trust said, “We welcome the €194 million set aside for homeless services and supports, this funding cannot be taken for granted and ensures that appropriate accommodation and services are available to people impacted by homelessness across Ireland.”
Mr Doyle welcomed the announcement of increased funding for the DEIS programme, “It’s great to see additional €18 million in funding for the DEIS programme which will benefit students and teachers, as well as an increased budget for the hot school meal programme.
“I welcome the fact that €200 fee for PLC courses is to be abolished. This is another barrier removed for people who struggle with the cost of accessing education particularly those who may be seeking a return to education and those in vulnerable settings such as homelessness or care.”
Mr Doyle welcomed the additional funding of €4 million set aside to support SICAP, “The additional funding towards the Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme will benefit vulnerable groups including those in or at risk of homelessness and allow local SICAP forums offer more supports to those groups.”
Finally, Mr Doyle pointed to the funding for the youth justice strategy as a positive development. “The €6.7 million set aside in 2022 for the Youth Justice Strategy will result in better outcomes for vulnerable children and young people with targeted programme of supports.”