Conor Skehan, the chair of the Republic of Ireland’s Housing Agency, has been condemned for describing homelessness as “a normal thing.”
Skehan told RTE’s Moring Ireland radio show: “Homelessness is a dreadful thing when it happens to someone, but it is a normal thing, it happens.”
Rejecting the term “crisis,” the government advisor explained: “When we started to realise we are the same as all the other countries in Europe, we start to take the emotion out of this argument, because emotion is the enemy of this.”
Critics accused him of complacency, pointing to the nation’s official statistics that show a rising number of homeless people.
Sinn Féin’s deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald said the government was attempting to “minimise” a growing “emergency.”
Might the housing chief have a point?