Of the 4,761,865 persons enumerated in the State on Census Night, April 24 2016, 6,906 were either counted in accommodation providing shelter for homeless persons or were identified sleeping rough. These results are based on a targeted approach aimed at measuring the extent of homeless persons in Ireland. Males account for 58.2 per cent of the homeless population.
A comprehensive approach to measuring homelessness was adopted for the first time as part of Census 2011. However, the nature and extent of homelessness has changed since the last census, not only in scale but also regarding the type of accommodation being used. For example, at the time of the census in April 2016 there were significant numbers of homeless persons being accommodated in what is termed Private Emergency Accommodation (PEA), namely commercial hotels and B&Bs, and this posed particular challenges for enumeration. Another significant change on 2011 is that persons in Long Term Accommodation (LTA) are excluded from the main results in this report, an approach agreed in advance with all the major stakeholders working in the area of homelessness. For this reason the results in this report are not directly comparable with 2011. More details in relation to those in Long Term Accommodation and a list of the major stakeholders can be found in the Background Notes.
|Table 1.1 Persons enumerated in accommodation for the homeless and sleeping rough by sex, 2016|
|Persons in accommodation||3,914||2,869||6,783|
|Persons sleeping rough||104||19||123|
Homeless persons were identified based on where they were on Census Night rather than by self-identification. This methodology was agreed beforehand by the major stakeholders.
For a full description of the methodology used see Background Notes.
Table 1.2 shows the distribution of homeless persons by region of responsibility based on the Regional Homeless Action Plans in April 2016. (See Background notes for details of the regions).
The results show that 72.5 per cent of the persons enumerated as part of the homeless count were covered by the Dublin region on Census Night. Of the 5,009 people enumerated as part of the Dublin region, 55.9 per cent or 2,802 were male.
The next largest region was the South West. Of the 471 homeless persons enumerated in this region, 285 were male.
|Table 1.2 Homeless persons by region as per the Regional Homeless Action Plans in April 2016|
The homeless population tended to be younger than the general population. The average age of a homeless person was 30.5 years compared to the higher 37.4 average age for the general population.
There were 4,464 homeless persons in the age group 20-59, accounting for 64.6 per cent of the total homeless count. The corresponding proportion for the overall population of the State was 54.1 per cent.
The average age for females was 26.8 years compared with the higher 33.2 years for males. This contrasted with the general population where the average female age was 38.0 years compared with the lower average age of 36.7 years for males.
There were 413 persons aged 60 years and over, representing 6.0 per cent of the total homeless count, while there were 635 persons aged over 55 years.
There were 1,846 young persons aged 0-17 years, of which 1,594 were enumerated as children in family units.
|Table 1.3 Homeless persons by 5 year age-group, 2016|
|Age group||All persons||Homeless persons|
Interactive table: StatBank Link E5003
Among the 5,212 homeless persons aged 15 and over, 55.1 per cent were single compared with 41.1 per cent for the general population. Some 462 homeless persons were either married (including same-sex civil partnership) or re-married, representing 8.9 per cent of the group. In contrast, 47.7 per cent of the general population were married. Just over 12.0 per cent of the homeless population aged 15 and over was either separated or divorced, significantly higher than the general population for which the equivalent figure was 5.9 per cent.
See the Background Notes for an explanation of ‘not stated’.
|Table 1.4 Homeless persons by marital status, 2016|
|In a registered same-sex civil partnership||10||14||24|
There were 896 family units enumerated as part of the homeless count, representing 2,968 persons. A family is defined as a couple with or without children or a one parent family with at least one child. There were 67 couples with no children, 326 families with one child, 261 families with 2 children and 131 families with 3 children. A further 111 families had four or more children. There were 1,720 persons enumerated as children (regardless of age) in family units.
Among the family units with children, 262 were couples and a further 567 were one parent families. There were 249 family units containing a one parent family with one child, 187 one parent families with 2 children and 78 one parent families with 3 children. There were 53 one parent families with 4 or more children. Female parents accounted for 95.8 per cent of all one parent families.
|Table 1.5 Homeless persons in family units by family type and number of children, 2016|
|Number of children||Couple without children||Couple with children||One parent family with children||Total families||Total persons|
|Four or more||0||58||53||111||671|