Pope's visit

Homeless people will only be moved from Dublin if 'absolutely necessary' during Pope Francis visit

Homeless people will only be moved from Dublin if 'absolutely necessary' during the Pope's visit

HOMELESS people will only be moved from Dublin if "absolutely necessary" during the Pope's visit.

The Dublin Region Homeless Executive (DRHE) last night said it had sourced a "large number" of additional emergency accommodation to cater for families, including several units suitable for large families.

But it said the emergency accommodation would only be used "when absolutely necessary".

There have been fears there could be shortages in accommodation as tens of thousands of people descend on Dublin this week for the World Meeting of Families.

But in a statement, the DRHE said contingency planning has been under way ahead of the visit by Pope Francis and extra emergency accommodation outside the city was available.

It also said it had increased staffing of its freephone number on Saturday and Sunday.

Pope Francis is due to meet with homeless people in Dublin this weekend. Picture by AP

"The DRHE is aware of the difficult circumstances that families experiencing homelessness have to face and we will continue to monitor the demand for emergency accommodation during this time," it said.

"We will endeavour in the first instance, to accommodate any families that newly present during the Papal visit within the Dublin region.

"However, as part of our additional contingency measures, a certain number of spaces are located outside of the Dublin region, these will be utilised only when absolutely necessary."

Pope Francis is due to visit the Capuchin Day Centre, a centre for homeless people close to Phoenix Park, on Saturday.

It is understood he will be introduced to men and woman who use the centre in what has been listed as a "private visit".

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