Caretaker government continue to ignore opposition proposals, even when echoed by Master of the High Court

housingIn a statement, People Before Profit has condemned the failure of the government to abandon policies that are directly causing and exacerbating the housing and homelessness crisis. People Before Profit also accused the government of continuously ignoring alternative proposals to deal with the crisis, being put forward by opposition parties, including Anti-Austerity Alliance- People Before Profit.

Recently published figures show that there is a further increase in the number of families living in homeless emergency accommodation. The figures show that in February there were 912 families, including 1,881 children registered as homeless.

On March 22nd AAA-People Before Profit put down a comprehensive Dáil motion outlining a series of short and long terms measures that could be taken to resolve the crisis, including the call to use compulsory purchase powers to acquire social housing and house the homeless. The call to use compulsory purchase powers, first made on March 22nd by AAA-PBP, has since been taken up by Edward Honohan, the Master of the high Court. (see attached motion)

Richard Boyd Barrett and Bríd Smith will be making statements on housing later today in the Dáil.

Richard Boyd Barrett TD of People Before Profit said: “For years now we have been telling the government that their policies were directly causing and worsening the housing crisis and we have been making serious and detailed alternative proposals. The government have consistently ignored the criticisms we have made and the alternatives we have proposed. Even now as the crisis turns into a full-scale emergency, the caretaker government continue to totally ignore proposals from the opposition.

On March the 22nd AAA-PBP put forward a motion to the Dáil outlining detailed, short and long term proposals to help resolve the homelessness situation. We have been making these points for a number of years. These include compulsory purchasing of houses to house homeless people and those on the housing list. We also called for NAMA to cease all sales of land and property to vulture funds and to use their resources to build social and affordable housing. Now even Edmund Honohan, the Master of the High Court, is echoing these calls and still the government refuses to listen.”

Bríd Smith TD said that “the homelessness and housing crisis is totally out of control and it is really enraging that the previous government and current caretaker government continues to pay lip service to the need to address the crisis. They do this while implementing policies that continue to compound the issue further.

Practical measures that the government could take are to stop NAMA selling off land and assets to vulture funds, raise rent caps and abandon the policy of outsourcing social housing to private landlords. Government policies have created this crisis but the government absolutely refuse to acknowledge their mistakes and break from failed policies.

On the last Dail sitting day, we put forward a motion providing comprehensive, short and long term measures to resolve the issue but the government continue to ignore us and effectively ignore those on the housing list and those who are homeless.”