Cri­sis as num­bers sleep­ing rough and beg­ging spi­ral

Drogheda Independent - - NEWS -

THE in­creas­ing prob­lem of peo­ple sleep­ing rough and beg­ging around the town cen­tre in Drogheda was high­lighted at the Oc­to­ber meet­ing of Drogheda Mu­nic­i­pal District.

A num­ber of coun­cil­lors said they were aware of at least a dozen peo­ple who are sleep­ing rough in the town, in­clud­ing un­der and around the Bridge of Peace and around the Bull­ring.

Coun­cil­lor Frank God­frey claimed their were ‘up to 50’ peo­ple sleep­ing rough around the town and said this was very off­putting for vis­i­tors and tourists com­ing into the town.

‘One night I was out at 10pm and I found five peo­ple, in­clud­ing a woman, sleep­ing on the Bridge, they told me they were from Bos­nia. There was an­other young cou­ple sleep­ing at Su­per Valu. The amount of peo­ple beg­ging around town is shock­ing, the gar­daí are reg­u­larly out try­ing to move them on.’

How­ever, Coun­cil­lor Oliver Tully dis­puted the fig­ures and ad­mon­ished Coun­cil­lor God­frey for ‘pluck­ing fig­ures from the sky’.

‘ The re­al­ity is that for the past five years the rough sleeper count has been done and the of­fi­cials haven’t found one per­son sleep­ing rough,’ he said.

How­ever, Coun­cil­lor Tommy Byrne said he agreed with Coun­cil­lor God­frey and he had seen six peo­ple sleep­ing rough on the Bridge of Peace. Se­nior Ex­ec­u­tive Engi­neer Martina Sheeran said: ‘If there are peo­ple sleep­ing rough would you ask them to call into our home­less clinic, we had one in Drogheda, and we will help them how­ever we can.’

Cllr Oliver Tully

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