Call for Inner City Helping Homeless to be wound up ‘as soon as possible’ in the wake of abuse allegations
8 hrs ago
to victory in Portugal© (Photo by Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images) A view of a rough sleeper’s tents on Henry Street in Dublin city center
The Dublin Region Homeless Executive has called for the charity Inner City Helping Homeless to be dissolved or wound up “as quickly as possible”.
In a statement, the DRHE said it was “absolutely shocked” by reports of very serious allegations relating to the organisation.
It believed that any remaining services operated by ICHH can “easily be transitioned” to other providers and it offered to assist in this process.
The statement comes as gardaí are investigating complaints of sexual assault made recently against the charity’s former CEO Anthony Flynn, who was found dead last month.
“We are particularly distressed that some of our most vulnerable citizens may have been subjected to serious sexual abuse while seeking support and assistance for their homeless situation,” the statement says.
“Our main concern is for those affected by the reports circulating in recent weeks, and we are advising anybody who has been a victim of such a crime to report it directly to the gardaí.”© (Photo by Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images) A view of rough sleeper’s tents in Dublin city center
The DRHE welcomed recent comments by the Garda Commissioner around the issue of vetting those who interact directly with vulnerable homeless persons.
“The DRHE is strongly of the view that greater regulation, vetting and scrutiny is required for organisations/charities that set themselves up as service providers for homeless persons, including the provision of on-street food services.
“Several such organisations not funded by the DRHE have come into existence in recent years, and the DRHE and our partner agencies will be endeavouring in the coming months to bring the necessary expanded scrutiny and regulation to all such organisations.
“It is important to state that we are not referring to the larger and more established charities that we fund/partner, and who we rely very much upon to provide vital accommodation and support services to homeless persons in Dublin by way of comprehensive service level agreements.
“While we do contract a range of homeless service NGOs to provide certain specialist services for the DRHE, ICHH was not a provider of services for us and received no funding from us.”
The DRHE commended the former chair of ICHH, David Hall, for commissioning an investigation. It expected this report, along with the outcome of the garda and Charity Regulator investigations, to be published in due course.
It said it was “strongly of the view” that ICHH should be wound up in an orderly way, “as quickly as possible”.