Plan should see fire ser­vice in­stall smoke alarms in squats

Mid Louth Independent - - COMMUNITY NEWS -

THERE has been much de­bate about the home­less fig­ures in the Drogheda area in re­cent times, with many feel­ing that the num­bers ac­tu­ally sleep­ing on the streets does not rep­re­sent the true num­ber of home­less.

That’s cor­rect. There are a num­ber of squats around town and some have fallen vic­tim to fires as well.

The usual rough sleep­ers count is done by coun­cil offi- cials each year. This year itis hoped that gardai will at­tend with them.

While they may be able to spot peo­ple in the open,how does that give any count of how many peo­ple are home­less?

Those liv­ing rough in squats won’t wel­come the coun­cil or gardai call­ing to them - for fear of evic­tion per­haps.

What should hap­pen is a true com­mu­nity project, some­thing that has hap­pened in other coun­tries.

The great ser­vices of the Fire Fight­ers in Drogheda should be em­ployed, ac­com­pa­nied by a coun­cil of­fi­cial.

They can call to squats and sim­ply ask those liv­ing there to al­low them in­stall free smoke alarms. Such a project will first of all pre­vent a tragedy hap­pen­ing if a fire does break out.

Se­condly, it gives a true in­di­ca­tion of how many peo­ple are liv­ing in such con­di­tions.

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