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Denial for accomodation dropped by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council

category dublin | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Thursday March 26, 2009 16:22author by Tara Burke - STAG-Advocacy and Accomodation Workerauthor email stagaccadvo at gmail dot comauthor phone 01-2957372 Report this post to the editors

A proposal by Southside Travellers Action Group (STAG),to drop the site from the 5 halting sites and 6 group housing schemes planned in the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown Traveller Accommodation Programme was defeated in a vote – of 20 to seven by county councillors last week. The accommodation plan adopted by the councillors will run from 2009 to 2013.

The decision by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council to include a site on the Enniskerry Road in its new five-year accommodation plan for Travellers has been welcomed by Southside Travellers Action Group (STAG). A proposal to drop the site from the 5 halting sites and 6 group housing schemes planned in the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown Traveller Accommodation Programme was defeated in a vote – of 20 to seven by county councillors last week. The accommodation plan adopted by the councillors will run from 2009 to 2013.
The group also welcomed the councillors’ decision to accept all applications for Traveller-specific housing regardless of the length of time a family has been resident in the county. An indigenous clause had been introduced for the first time in the draft plan and would have meant that only Travellers who had been living in the county for in the past three years could apply for accommodation.
However, STAG regrets that there is no plan in Dun Laoghaire’s new accommodation programme for transient halting sites. It wants a network of transient sites to be established by Dublin’s three local authorities to provide for the annual movement of Traveller families. The Housing (Traveller Accommodation) Act 1998 places a specific obligation on local authorities to provide services to facilitate and respect the needs associated with nomadism.

STAG also wants the Council to permit storing mobile caravans on group housing sites.

STAG, the community development group which works for Travellers’ rights in Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown, thanks Councillors who met with Travellers to discuss their submission on the plan prior to the Council’s adoption of the programme.

Concerns which it believes still need to be addressed include
*adoption of an equality statement respecting Travellers as equals of settled people in the accommodation plan
*urgent action on developing sites 11 of 13 sites proposed in the 2004-2008 plan have not been completed

Finally, STAG calls for an external evaluation of the past two Traveller Accommodation Programmes, 2000-2004 and 2004-2008 to identify good practice and obstacles to the completions of those programmes.

For further information contact:
Tara Burke, STAG Advocacy and Accommodation Worker
01-2957372, 087 9105307, STAGaccadvo@gmail.com

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