Parents Sleeping On Floor Appeal For Three-Bed House
Thursday, 6 April 2017
A FAMILY of five has spent two years in an emergency housing unit in Tullamore.
Michael Dooley and his wife Josephine have been sleeping on a mattress on the living room floor of their two-bedroom house in Lann Elo.
Their children, Savannah (14), Mike (9) and Amelia (6) are in the two available bedrooms and the family say they have spent 13 years on the Offaly social housing list.
'In this day and age I don't think it's good enough to be sleeping on a floor,' said Michael.
The family were previously in a larger house in Tullamore but had to move out when its owner decided to sell it.
They were then accommodated for two weeks in a bed and breakfast before the transfer to Lann Elo.
Lann Elo is a complex of housing units for people seeking emergency and short-term accommodation.
Michael said they had been seeking either a council house or a house in the private rented sector but could find neither, despite being on the social waiting list and being assessed as suitable for the Rental Accommodation Scheme (RAS).
The family say they are aware of others who have been provided with houses during the same period.
'We are grateful for being in here. In here is absolutely beautiful. We've nothing bad to say about it,' said Josephine.
'It's just too small for the five of us and the small fellow, he's not allowed to play out the front. He's into GAA but he's not allowed out the front with the hurl and the ball in case he breaks something.
Every time he wants to play he has to go up to the GAA and he is only 9 so you can't be leaving him go up there.'
Michael said Barry Cowen TD has been trying to help them find a three-bedroom house.
'No matter what TD we go to or what councillor or the social worker we're still no farther on. I think in this day and age I don't think it's good enough to be sleeping on a floor nearly two years.
'We were told we'd be here for four months, three to four months. That's two year ago now.
'We were assessed for the RAS scheme and we passed for it and that was six-and-a-half years ago and we never ever got offered a house.'
They have also received medical reports to support their case and are not concerned if the house is council or private.
'Give me a three-bed house and give this to someone who needs a two-bed,' said Josephine.
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