State agency wants Anthony Flynn charity to be dissolved – Extra.ie

A state homelessness agency has called for a charity to be wound up ‘as quickly as possible’ following sexual abuse allegations against its late founder Anthony Flynn.
The former Independent Dublin councillor and founder of Inner City Helping Homeless (ICHH) charity was found dead at his home in the capital last month.
He was facing allegations of sexual assault, made by users of the charity’s services.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the Dublin Regional Homeless Executive (DRHE) – which covers four Dublin local authorities – said it was ‘absolutely shocked’ by the allegations, recommending that the charity is quickly dissolved.
The statement read: ‘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 DRHE is now strongly of the view that the organisation/ charity Inner City Helping Homeless should be dissolved/wound up in an orderly way and as quickly as possible.
‘Any remaining services provided by ICHH can easily be transitioned into other service providers and the DRHE can assist in that process.’ A document sent to members of ICHH details four serious allegations of abuse that were made against Mr Flynn.
Written by David Hall, the former chairman of the charity, the document outlines a series of allegations of sexual abuse that were being investigated by gardaí earlier this year.
The first two alleged incidents occurred in May.
‘One involved a 21-year-old male [classified by gardaí as extremely vulnerable] in May 2021 being brought by taxi at 2.30am to the CEO’s home where [he] stayed the night,’ the report says. ‘[He] presented to an adult emergency department the following day and was transferred to the sexual assault unit.
‘[He] made an allegation to the gardaí when [he] arrived at the sexual assault unit. The gardaí believed the ICHH taxi account was used.
‘Thirteen days later a party related to an ICHH client was collected by taxi and brought to the CEO’s home. That night or the next morning, an allegation was made to gardaí of sexual assault.’
The document was obtained by RTÉ’s Prime Time and also stated that gardaí told Mr Hall that its investigation went further again.
‘Gardaí indicated they had met with some men, who were known to gardaí, where taxis had collected them and gardaí were working through 97 taxi journeys. These journeys had been paid for by the charity,’ the statement added.
One individual, who spoke to Prime Time, alleges that in March 2021, when he contacted Mr Flynn because he feared becoming homeless, the former CEO sent him a taxi to bring him to his home.
He alleged that he was sexually assaulted by Mr Flynn during his stay. In light of the allegations, Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said there will be a review of Garda vetting procedures for the homelessness sector, while Justice Minister Heather Humphreys confirmed that her department is carrying out a review of the vetting legislation.
The DRHE welcomed the news of the review.
‘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,’ the statement continued. ‘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 added: ‘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.’

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