Call to make former Hazel Hotel in Monasterevin a hub for emergency accomodation

No longer to be used to house refugees

Paula Campbell

Reporter:

Paula Campbell

Email:

paula@leinsterleader.ie

Call to make former Hazel Hotel in Monasterevin a hub for emergency accomodation

Former Hazel Hotel

Kildare town Cllr Suzanne Doyle has requested that Kildare County Council examine the potential use of Hazel Hotel as Family Hub for Family emergency accommodation.

According to Cllr Doyle the decision was made earlier this week that it is no longer to be used for it's original purpose of housing Syrian refugees and it is currently in process of transition.

"The facility is no longer to be used for it’s original purpose yet significant funds have been spent on adapting the accommodation to suit family settings," she said. 

"Due to lack of suitable family emergency accommodation, Kildare County Council frequently place families in temporary accommodation outside the County. As of today, I understand Kildare County Council are providing emergency accommodation for 259 people of which 132 are children, the Hazel can accommodate approx 200 people  in a well equipped family setting.  It is virtually impossible to secure bed nights in these settings at peak times of bank holidays, resulting in families being moved about regularly or simply no where to be put up. The facility in Monasterevin could address all of these issues and deliver a more suitable service at less cost in both money and man hours to Kildare County Council.”

She added that the the merits of considering transferring this to a dedicated family emergency hub are considerable, County Homeless service workers spend a lot of time and money on sourcing private sector temporary accommodation which is essentially Hotel and B&B, where they are competing with traditional customers for rooms.

 “This situation creates big challenges for families in terms of attendance to school, supports of broader family and friends. Bearing in mind that while in emergency accommodation, families still have to chase long term accommodation through private rented sector. House viewings and engagement with agents and landlords is both time consuming and costly and made all the more difficult when living a distance with no supports for caring for children. Having a dedicated family hub within the County that can meet needs of homeless in Kildare should assist in minimizing time spent in emergency and reduce the trauma of dislocation and uncertainty for families. I have had a case where a young working Mum of two was placed outside the County, this situation put her job at risk, seriously delayed her finding a long term solution. Needing emergency accommodation is clearly a stressful situation, but dislocation seriously heightens the stress levels for all concerned."

READ MORE: Hazel to accommodate 600 more refugees