Racism and racially motivated anti-social behaviour in social housing in Ireland is the focus of the present study. Out of all social environments, such as the workplace, educational institutions, or on the street the Immigrant Council of Ireland found that housing was one of the most significant loci of racially motivated anti-social behaviour. During 2013 and 2014 almost half (48%) of all incidents of racism in housing reported to their Racist Incidents Support and Referral Service took place in social housing.
The present study analyses quantitatively and qualitatively data gathered during 2013-14 through the Immigrant Council of Ireland’s Racist Incidents Support and Referral Service in order to paint a more detailed clearer picture of the victims’ experiences of racism in social housing in Ireland. The vast majority of clients (92%) only reported racial harassment and violence to the Immigrant Council of Ireland following unsuccessful interaction with the authorities, such as their local county council or the Gardaí. Thus, it was decided to work in collaboration with one local authority, Dublin City Council, in order to analyse their policy and practice around racism and racially motivated anti-social behaviour in social housing. Twelve in-depth interviews were carried out with Dublin City Council staff members and other key stakeholders to gather their experiences of dealing with racism in social housing in order to further inform this exploratory piece of research.