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Homeless people can vote in Ireland for first time

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A few months ago, Catherine, 54, was one of the 14,000 homeless people in Dublin. “It's been very difficult, especially for my age and older people and it's been scary.”She wails. This Friday, the Irish will vote in European and local elections. While most of the EU has “no address, no vote” rule, homeless people will be able to vote in Ireland for the first time. It follows reform from 2022, the first concrete application for Sunday's election. A new set of potential voters Take center stage the dire housing crisis facing the country.

After seven years on the streets, Catherine has found home and she wants to have a say. “I haven't voted in a long time, but I'm going to make sure I always vote from now on! When people get involved in this kind of thing, it gives them some of their power back. It's taken their power away. They face a lot when they're homeless. Catherine assures.

“Put homelessness at the top of the political agenda”

Because from now on in Ireland, homeless people will be able to register their local post office address, the address they need to register on the electoral roll. “We're trying to put homelessness at the top of the political agenda, and we think we can do that by creating a voting bloc of people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. And in Ireland, the current situation, there's a chance that someone will find themselves on the street!Louise Bayliss of NGO Focus Ireland explains.

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As Ireland's housing crisis deepens, she said the vote could change the tone of the next election.

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