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Planned 50% cut to Housing Executive budget would be disastrous

22 November, 2007

Sinn Féin Newry and Armagh MLA Mickey Brady has said that Margaret Ritchie's plans to cut Housing Executive funding by 50% is a huge mistake and would have disastrous consequences for the most vulnerable people in our society.

The SDLP Housing Minister's proposals to cut funding to the Housing Executive will effectively mean that more people are caught in the homeless and housing trap and will also have severe implications for homeowners seeking grants to help them bring their homes up to an acceptable living standard.

Mr Brady said:

"The elderly, disabled and most vulnerable in our communities will face increased burden and abandonment.

"Basic housing is a right and not a privilege. The Minister can complain about under funding but the reality is that all departments and all Ministers have difficult decisions to make. Her proposals to slash the Housing Executive budget by 50% cent will have disastrous consequences.

"Housing Minister Margaret Ritchie needs to start showing some leadership and a little initiative in dealing with the current housing crisis. The decision will only make matter far worse for the most vulnerable people in housing need." ENDS

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