Understanding Homelessness in Ireland

However, this Act does not place any legal obligation on local authorities to provide housing for people who are homeless. It is also quite a limited definition of homelessness, given that there are many paths into homelessness.

FEANTSA (the European Federation of organisations working with people who are homeless) has developed a broader definition of homelessness that contains four different types of homelessness. The four categories are:


People sleeping rough or using night shelters


People staying in accommodation for the homeless or people who are due to be released from an institution, such as a hospital or prison

Insecure Housing

People staying temporarily with friends, people under threat of violence or eviction

Inadequate Housing

People living in temporary structures, or housing that is not safe to live in