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01st Oct 2015

Breaking: Women’s refuge in Dublin forced to close doors over lack of funding

The Cuan Álainn refuge in Tallaght, that house mothers and children before they move into long-term housing, has said it will have to close its doors unless it receives emergency government funding.

Currently nine adults and 18 children are staying at the shelter, which costs €350,000 yearly to run.

The refuge, which opened in 2012, has supported some 71 women and 96 children in its time. But the outlook is now bleak.

“We have come to the regrettable decision to close the service in an orderly manner before the end of the year,” Ned Brennan, the charity’s CEO, told the Journal.ie.

“We cannot continue to fully run this service, 100% from our own resources, without any state assistance due to the cost burden,” he said.

Brennan added that plans are now underway to arrange alternative accommodation for those living in the facility.

“Without this service, women and children may now have to return home to an abusive environment or be forced to enter homelessness,” he said.

According to Brennan, the refuge has requested funding on several occasions from the government’s child and family agency, Tusla, and South Dublin County Council. But despite the fact that most of its referrals come from state services, the refuge has not received any government funding since opening three and a half years ago.

Tusla confirmed it has met with the charity to discuss the potential closure but that it has not at any stage financially supported the service, which is independent of the state sector.

“[The facility] does not operate as a frontline emergency domestic violence service, rather it provides ‘step down’ or ‘transitional’ accommodation to support a transition to a permanent settled home,” a spokesperson from Tusla said.

Clearly losing this facility will impact many who desperately need the refuge to stay open. What do YOU think about the state not providing any funding for this service? Please send me an e-mail at: Trine.Jensen@HerFamily.ie