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Home: Dream or Possibility? Challenges for the Homeless Services

The evaluation of existing plans and services for homeless people currently being undertaken by the independent review of 1 provides an opportunity to reflect on the progress that has been made in recent years in addressing homelessness in Dublin and to highlight the significant challenges that are still ahead if the aim of eliminating homelessness in the capital by 2010 is to be realised.


Housing the New Ireland Comment on the NESC Report

In spring 2004, Focus Ireland, the voluntary organisation dealing with homelessness, placed a series of poster advertisements around Dublin city. These were designed to look rather like the plaques which are put on buildings to indicate that a noted artist, political figure or other famous person once lived there.


Aspects of Catholic Social Teaching on Housing

Many readers will have heard of Niall Mellon, the Dublin developer who has taken on the task of providing houses for families in the South African township of Imizamo Yethu. Some years ago,


Planning for People Observations on NESC Chapter 5

At the close of the 20th century, a mere five years ago, there was delight and optimism in planning and environmentally informed
circles that Ireland was for the first time ever about to have a hierarchically integrated system of interrelated plans covering the country and operating at every level. Preparation of the National Spatial Strategy was well advanced. The provided a statutory basis for the preparation and implementation of Regional Planning Guidelines. The Act also modernised the\’Development Plan\’ process and established procedures for making and implementing Local Area Plans. This new approach to planning was introduced against the continuing national partnership approach, most recently articulated in .



Working Notes – Issue 50 Editorial

The Second Report of the Morris Tribunal, published on 1 June 2005, makes even more disturbing reading than the First Report, which was commented on in in November 2004. The Tribunal investigated the corruption that existed among some Gardai in Donegal, the manipulation of facts intended to deceive Garda Management, “gross integligence at senior level” and “appalling management”.


Budget 2004 – Small Change for the Poor

The day after Budget 2004, the Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern TD, was on the defensive. The Budget, he declared, would dispel the myth that this was a right-wing Government which cared only for its rich friends. He talked about the increase in social welfare payments and the concentration of income tax cuts on the incomes of… Read more »


Including Older People in Irish Society

We didn’t have to be told. The health service is in a mess, number 21 out of 22 in the “Western World”. When we look at the financial resources devoted to health (based on 2001 figures), Ireland is the lowest spender, along with Finland, devoting 7.3% of GDP to public spending on health compared to… Read more »


Connecting Debt and Trade from a Development Perspective

How Do We Define ‘Development’? Before examining the connections between debt and trade, it is worthwhile to reflect on what we mean when we talk about a ‘development perspective’. It is now widely accepted that economic models that are not people-centred have led us to the current global crisis of deepening poverty, degradation of rights,… Read more »



Working Notes – Issue 49 Editorial

Dear Reader, On 8th October 2004 the Minister of State responsible for Overseas Development, Conor Lenihan TD, was quoted in Irish newspapers as saying that ‘there has to be an element of realism’ regarding Ireland’s commitment for achieving the UN target for overseas development aid by 2007, given that ‘we’ve had two years of retrenchment… Read more »


Morris Tribunal Report and the Garda Siochana Bill 2004

1. Morris Tribunal Report The Morris Tribunal’s Report into corruption involving some Gardai in Donegal (1) has major implications for the Garda Síochána generally. The Report calls for radical reform of the structures within the Gardai, structures which have remained essentially unchanged since the foundation of the State and which are clearly in need of… Read more »