Numbers helped by Simon Community rose 33.4% last year

Ending of moratorium on evictions ‘has seen homelessness grow in last few months’

The number of people helped by the Simon Community increased by 33.4 per cent last year, when 24,127 people were assisted by the charity.

A total of 110,219 nights of emergency accommodation was provided to homeless people, according to the latest annual report for the Simon Communities of Ireland.

A total of 6,174 people were supported by Simon’s rough sleeping and outreach teams.

The number of people in emergency accommodation fell during the year but the “structural causes of the housing and homelessness crisis continued,” the organisation said.


The Simon Communities is a network of communities around the State supported by the organisation’s national office.

During 2020, 1,415 people accessed specialist treatment and support services, of which 1,329 had issues with drug and/or alcohol.

Wayne Stanley, Simon’s head of policy and communications, said measures taken in 2020 in response to the Covid-19 pandemic contributed to a rapid decrease in the number of people in emergency accommodation.

“It illustrated what is possible when Government treats homelessness as the emergency that it is,” he said.

“The ending of the moratorium on evictions and the opening of society has seen homelessness grow over the last few months.”

Colm Keena

Colm Keena

Colm Keena is an Irish Times journalist. He was previously legal-affairs correspondent and public-affairs correspondent