On the day that Ireland defended its actions on the rights of children before UN Committee on the Rights of the Child in Geneva. The barbaric Louth County Council took the opposite point of view and created unnecessary pain and suffering to Traveller Children.
The families were evicted from a Traveller local authority halting site that had been decommissioned by Louth County Council.
Pavee Point condemns these evictions as unnecessary and unwarranted. “This is one of coldest nights of the year and these people have no where to go,” said Martin Collins, Co Director of Pavee Point. “It is clear that Louth County Council has absolutely no concern for the health and safety of these families”
“Louth County Council has totally failed in its duty here. It has a policy of not providing Traveller Specific accommodation such as halting sites or group housing schemes,” said Martin Collins, “They are trying to force Travellers into social or private housing and this is in total breach of the 1998 Traveller Accommodation Act.”
“There is a demand for Traveller specific accommodation in Dundalk and these families are the living proof.
“These families have children at school in the town. Think how these children will be affected by this !
Pavee Point urges the Environment Minister to intervene to find a solution and make good undertakings that there would be no mass evictions of Traveller families as a result of fire safety audits on halting sites in the wake of the Carrickmines fire tragedy.
These evictions are confirming fears that Pavee Point had that local authorities would use the fire audits in a cynical way to evict Travellers. It is important at this stage that Travellers engaging with the Environment Dept in its safety audit can have trust in this process.
Minister Kelly put a Community Initiative in place at his Department to deal with any issues around fire safety on Traveller halting sites and it is through this Initiative that any fire safety issues on sites should be dealt with.
January 15, 2016 at 7:45 pm
To my blog readers:
Just imagine how you would feel if your local authority were to rescind the planning permission on the house that you had lived in for years. Then arrived at your home, along with the police, on a very cold day in January to evict you.
Can you imagine how these people must feel?
Today, Eleanor Kelly, solicitor for six of the evicted families said the youngest family member is eight days old.
Four of the families stayed in B&B accommodation this weekend, while two others stayed with their families and friends.
“The youngest is eight days old, there are 17 families in total,”
“The difficulty is that they were given 48 hours to find alternative accommodation.”
She said she had been in contact with Louth County Council about the site at Woodland Park last August, but did not hear back from the council until last week when the families were being delivered 48 hours’ notice to be evicted.
A fire officer visited the site in October and deemed it to be a hazard.
“If there’s work to be done, there’s work to be done.” But she added: “I was in contact with the council last August”
“The ideal situation is to allow them to go to a halting site but there’s no other halting site in Dundalk.”
“These are Dundalk families, they want to be in Dundalk, but I’m aware the halting site in Drogheda is full anyway.”
The council met with Traveller representatives on Saturday to agree on temporary accommodation for the 17 families involved.
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