“Say Yes To The Address”; We Review RTÉ’s New Homelessness Reality Show

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WWN have had a sneak peak at RTÉ’s upcoming reality TV series ‘Say Yes To The Address’, and if you enjoy seeing displaced families in emergency accommodation being pressured into accepting unsuitable houses in unsafe areas by the Department of Housing and local authorities, then this may be the show for you.

Each week we’re introduced to a new family, usually a single mother of several small kids to further propagate the idea that homeless men are the lads you see on doorsteps and homeless women are the ones you see in hotels and judged online. We follow them as they’re shown the house, apartment or modular housing unit that the government have earmarked for them.

Faced with the choice between accepting whatever vacant unit the government happened to have lying around or being dumped back into a hotel room with your children while you get stuck at the back of the queue, each family must answer one simple question; do you say yes to the address?

“Somebody in the office mentioned how it was a disgrace that the government are playing with people’s lives, and we thought ‘hey, that’s not a bad idea'” said Dermut Orlan, the producer of Say Yes To The Address.

“When we investigated, we saw that homeless families are often offered accommodation in dangerous, crime-ridden areas that are completely unsuitable for young children, or accommodation that sends the family far away from their extended family or support network, leaving them with an unenviable choice to make. Which really gives SYTTA the ticking clock ‘hook’ that reality TV thrives on”.

“The harder the choice for the family, the easier the choice for the viewer. At home, you’ll be screaming at the screen ‘take the house my tax money is paying for and be glad of it, you dumb bitch!’ as some terrified young mother tries to argue with her housing officer about not wanting to raise her young son in a house surrounded by heroin addicts. It’s really compelling, honestly”.

Say Yes To The Address will showcase one family each week and intends to feature every family currently registered as homeless, which means it will run for 197 years and counting.

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