Councillors in Ennis are calling for increased communication with the Gardai to attempt to eradicate anti-social behaviour incidents in the town.
It’s after concerns have once again been raised about a number of issues relating to the intimidation of residents near the Ashford Court hotel, which is providing emergency accommodation to a number of homeless people here.
The issue of anti-social behaviour became a focal point in a meeting of Ennis Municipal District councillors yesterday, following the Council’s confirmation that it’s working with An Bord Pleanala to resolve an application for a ‘change of use’ at the Westbrook facility, which also provides support to those in need of emergency accommodation.
The discussion turned to concerns in the Hermitage and the Considine Road areas, where residents have reported alleged drug dealing and intimidation of people by a minority of users of the Winter Initiative Project in Ashford Court.
While councillors last month passed a draft anti-social behaviour strategy for complaints relating to tenants of local authority homes, it does not cover those in emergency accommodation.
Fine Gael councillor Johnny Flynn says an alternative to hotel and b&b accommodation for those in need should be facilitated.
Local representatives in Ennis are also calling for more communication with An Garda Siochana in an attempt to curb the problem.
It’s understood that under current legislation, a sub committee of the current county wide Joint Policing Committee for Ennis specifically would be committed, something that councillors want to see come to fruition.
Fianna Fail representative Clare Colleran Molloy believes Ennis needs specific attention.
However, Clare’s Chief Superintendent says Ennis is relatively no different to other similar sized towns in terms of its scale of anti-social behaviour.
Sean Colleran believes a multi-agency approach is the best way to address the issue of anti-social behaviour across the town.