Housing a Major Concern for One-Parent Families

Kitty Holland writes in the Irish Times today about the distressing case of Sabrina McMahon, a lone parent who has been spending nights with her three young children in their car. Housing concerns and worries are the cause of continuous stress for many of the parents One Family works with, with many telling us they are ‘on the edge’.

Good secure housing enhances children’s well-being and helps provide stability for family relationships, schools and development. The housing crisis is a challenge for Minister Burton that she has to resolve for Budget 2015.

Every month, we invite responses to our anonymous, 3 question survey. Last month’s was on Housing Supports. Comments made by some of those who took the survey included:

I’m from Dublin and still have family there but I was forced to move to Wicklow in 2007 where I have no family or supports.

I can’t do a Masters in Education as I was planning, as I live over 45 km from the college I would have had to attend and I would not be able to afford the journeys.

Having to move constantly due to rent increases takes up time, money and creates instability. A constant home is essential in maintaining positive routine.

Security of place is very important for emotional stability of the children.

Longer leases, RAS (Rent Allowance Supplement) to be more attractive for landlords and to be extended beyond a once off, and more social housing is key with rent to buy schemes in place. 

The Housing Supports survey results can be read here. This will be a key topic of One Family’s Budget 2015 submission.

This month’s survey is on Housing and Rent Supplement Limits and can be taken here.