The Archbishop of Dublin has said the homelessness situation in Ireland is a big emergency.

Diarmuid Martin said there was an emergency two years ago which led to a plan being made but there is still a problem today.

He was speaking at the launch of preparations for the World Meeting of Families in St Patrick's College in Drumcondra.

We need your consent to load this rte-player contentWe use rte-player to manage extra content that can set cookies on your device and collect data about your activity. Please review their details and accept them to load the content.Manage Preferences

Pope Francis chose Dublin as the location for the event, which will be held between 22 and 26 August 2018.

Speaking to reporters this morning, Dr Martin said there are many challenges facing families today, including drugs, violence and homelessness.

He said he is looking at a way to offer accommodation to families living in hotels and other unsuitable accommodation.

He said: "Two years ago we had an emergency and we had plans to address it and still we're not making it".

He said another challenging problem is violence and the number of stabbings saying: "We have to start speaking about how this violence is developing in society."

700 delegates are gathering in St Patrick's today to begin the process of preparing for the 2018 event, which is expected to attract thousands of people from around the world.

The event is held every three years.

The Pope has been invited to attend and Archbishop Martin is hopeful he will.

Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland Eamon Martin said "a challenge for our preparation and celebration of the World Meeting of The Families is how we are going to connect with those who, for whatever reason, perceive that the church has little or nothing to say to their particular family situation".