Impact of rent allowance cut

 

Sir, – The plight of Eileen O’Sullivan (May 4th) is by no means unique.

Many people in private rented accommodation, who depend on a rent supplement from the State, now find themselves at risk of homelessness.

They are being told that the accommodation they have been living in, some of them for many years, is too expensive and are being given 13 weeks to find cheaper accommodation, or lose their rent supplement entirely. Some will not be able to find cheaper accommodation, as the demand for rental accommodation is increasing, and will become homeless, obliged to sleep in drug-filled emergency shelters. Those who succeed will find themselves in small, dingy, depressing flats, often unfit for human habitation, offered by unscrupulous landlords who will now be rewarded by the State with a guaranteed monthly income.

The current rent supplement policy is crazy, heartless and immoral.

In order to save €10 or €15 per week, the State is imposing huge mental stress and potential homelessness on thousands of people who have been forced into private rented accommodation because of a lack of social housing. – Yours, etc,

Fr PETER McVERRY, SJ

Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice,

Upper Sherrard St,

Dublin 1.