Thursday, May 31, 2012

Kelly calls for swift action on social housing crisis

Speaking at the recent Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Killarney, Wexford Cllr Anthony Kelly called on the government to take action in dealing with what he terms, ‘the social housing crisis’. Cllr Kelly told the packed auditorium that people in real need of support were being prohibited from gaining access to the social housing waiting list all across the state due to regulations brought in by the coalition government.

Cllr Kelly said;

“I was part of a delegation from Wexford who recently met officials from the Department of the Environment to raise the concerns of the Wexford Borough Councillors in relation to the implementation of the new Social Housing Assessment Regulations. We had hoped to meet the Minister but were fobbed off with officials instead.”

“It’s very clear in Wexford town, and in towns across this state, that certain applicants are being denied access to the social housing list while others on the list are marginalised. This is particularly evident where married couples or couples cohabitating, who may have recently split up and one has to leave the family home, could find themselves having to live in sheltered accommodation because these new regulations make things so difficult for them to access rent allowance and get onto the housing list.”

Cllr Kelly spoke in favour of a motion calling for the transfer of suitable NAMA properties into state ownership as social housing.

“It is immoral for this government to deny vulnerable people the right to social housing while they sit on thousands of properties. NAMA is an arm of the state. The government has the full authority to use properties held under NAMA for social housing. There should also be compulsory purchase orders on suitable properties that lie vacant for eighteen months or more.”

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