Council “has failed” to provide housing for Travellers in Naas

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More money should be spent ensuring that Traveller families have adequate permanent accommodation in the Naas area.

And according to a Traveller representative group families living on the roadside want proper accommodation - but this is not available to them.

PJ Dooley of Kildare Traveller Action Ltd., said Kildare County Council has failed to meet obligations and targets under a number of Traveller accommodation programmes for the past 13 years.

Traveller accommodation was discussed in committee (closed to the Leinster Leader) by KCC officials and councillors on November 19 at a KCC Naas area meeting.

Referring to recent articles in the Leader regarding Traveller families camped at the roadside, Mr. Dooley said Travellers do not generally want to be there and “the reason they are there is that they have nowhere else to go.”

He said this is due to the fact that the council is allocating virtually no houses and no new houses are being built.

Mr. Dooley believes that Naas - with population of over 20,000 - must be “the only county town in Ireland without a halting site or group housing scheme.”

This is despite the fact that many Traveller families have a long association with Naas.

Families living by the side of the road have no access to running water, electricity or sanitation, he said, adding this has serious implications for their health and wellbeing.

“Families on the roadside want proper accommodation but this is not available to them.”

Instead, he said the council’s response is nearly always to initiate court proceedings in order to move people on (this often happen under pressure from councillors). KTA has written to County Manager Michael Malone seeking action and awaits a response.




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