Home > Focussing on B&Bs: the unacceptable growth of emergency B&B placement in Dublin.

Focus Ireland. Houghton, FT and Hickey, Conor (2001) Focussing on B&Bs: the unacceptable growth of emergency B&B placement in Dublin. Dublin: Focus Ireland.

PDF ( Focussing on B&Bs) - Published Version

Accommodating the homeless in Bed & Breakfasts (B&Bs) is an unacceptable, unhealthy, and expensive short-term solution to housing shortage. Research reports demonstrate the ill-health effects of living in such accommodation. This research was undertaken in response to concern by Focus Ireland and others that the use of B&B accommodation for emergency purposes was increasing, and that the time spent by those placed in B&Bs was lengthening. This long-term use of B&Bs has been proven to have adverse effects on those using them, effecting health, stability of family life and their isolation from local communities and families.

The majority of those using B&Bs are lone-parent or two-parent families with children (57%), with a significant minority single adults (32%). Thirty-two percent of homeless households cited the parental home as their last permanent residence, highlighting the dependence of many households on accommodation sharing. Almost 41% cited local authority housing and privately rented accommodation as their last permanent residence. Family conflicts were cited as the main reason for becoming homeless, followed closely by drug and alcohol addiction, indicating that a substantial proportion of people placed in B&Bs also require some form of support to overcome substance misuse. In 1990 the Eastern Health Board (EHB) placed just five households into emergency B&Bs at a cost of £520. In 1999 this figure had risen to 1,202 households at a cost of £4.7 million. The length of placement rose from an average of 12 nights in 1992 to 81 nights in 1999. This is of major concern in that 1,262 of the 2,780 placed were children. Given that long-term B&B accommodation is unacceptable the report calls for urgent long-term social housing and calls for a full and speedy implementation of the Planning and Development Bill.

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Report
Drug Type
All substances
Call No
MK10.6, VH4.2 Dublin
41 p.
Focus Ireland
Corporate Creators
Focus Ireland
Place of Publication
Accession Number
HRB 1894 (Available)
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