DERRY JOURNAL Editorial: Pop-up B&Bs a local speciality?
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That’s more than was spent on emergency housing across the whole of the North in 2018/19.
Derry now accounts for 41 per cent of total expenditure on temporary accommodation with more money spent here than in Belfast (£3,693,826).
The concentration of emergency tenants in Derry has led to SDLP MLA Mark H. Durkan raising concerns of ‘temporary accommodation tourism’. That’s a matter for debate.
It is certainly the case, according to the data, that expenditure on single lets, hotels, B&Bs and specialised accommodation is disproportionate here in comparison with other areas.
Twenty-seven times as much money was spent here as was in Mid & East Antrim (£210,196) and the Causeway Coast and Glens (£211,172) districts.
It does beg the question: why is the spend here significantly higher than anywhere else in the North?
To be clear, it is essential safe, secure, emergency housing is urgently provided to homeless people.
It also clear, as Mr. Durkan contends, that ‘very vulnerable and at times volatile individuals from across the North are being placed in Derry away from their support network’.
Is Derry uniquely able to provide this type of accommodation while other areas somehow cannot?