Access to affordable housing should be basic right - Ní Chuilín
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Housing Carál Ní Chuilín said many families are already struggling to meet housing costs across all tenures.
The North Belfast MLA was commenting after figures released revealed a 3.7 percent increase in rent within the private rental sector here. A rise sharper, compared to private rental costs in Britain during the same period.
Carál Ní Chuilín said:
“Disproportionate housing costs as compared to family income is increasing hardship and driving child poverty here. Many families living in private rentals are finding it increasingly difficult to pay their rent while others are struggling to service mortgage-debt of up to 60 percent of their monthly pay.
“Sinn Fein’s mitigation of Welfare Reform will protect families here by retaining direct payments and challenging the Bedroom Tax but a recent report into the roll out of Universal Credit in England and its impact on rent arrears raises concerns.
“We need a radical approach to housing costs across the board. Access to appropriate, affordable housing should be regarded as a basic right.”