On the fourth anniversary of homeless man Jonathan Corrie’s death near the Dáil, thousands marched in Dublin to protest the country’s housing crisis, on December 1st, 2018.
During the protest, which was organised by the umbrella National Homeless and Housing Coalition (NHHC), there was a minute silence to remember Corrie’s death.
“I was there because I wanted to see the people who are taking action against this crisis. I’m a student who’s paying upwards of 9 grand for my accommodation in Shanowen [a purpose built student accommodation complex opposite DCU), I want to see the people who are helping stop that extortion,” said DCU science student Daniel Cox.
Approximately 10,000 people took part in the march, which is estimated to be the amount of people currently homeless in Ireland this Christmas. Child homelessness has risen to 35 per cent since Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy first took office, according to an article by The Journal.
Various other groups marched alongside the NHHC including the Union of Students Ireland (USI), People Before Profit, Inner City Helping Homeless, the Irish Traveller Movement and more.
“I was there near the end of the march so I only saw two speakers but they were both great. TJ Hogan was a great speaker as he talked about the difficulties the travelling community are facing in this housing climate,” said Cox.
“Travellers consistently get a raw deal in Ireland, and now with everyone being affected by this, they are once again feeling one of the hardest blows to their community,” he continued.
Ailbhe Smyth was another speaker at the march who spoke about the amount of homeless children who are writing to Santa for Christmas this year with no address to put down, on their letters, to deliver presents to.
“This is a housing crisis that doesn’t just affect students, doesn’t just affect people living rough on the street and doesn’t just affect travellers. It affects everyone in one sweeping go and that’s why we have to join together and fight this as a group,” said USI Vice President for the Dublin Region, Colm O’Halloran.
“When people come together to fight for things they get change,” he continued.
In March of this year, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar declared that the homelessness and housing crisis is a national emergency, in front of an Oireachtas Committee.
Image Credit: Independent.ie