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Sinn Féin tables motion of no confidence in Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy

11 September, 2018 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD


Today, Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has submitted a motion of no confidence in the Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy. The motion will be debated in the Dáil on Tuesday September 25th.

Deputy Ó Broin said:

“Fine Gael’s housing policies are not only failing to tackle the housing crisis, they are actually making things worse. They have been in office for seven years and during that time homelessness has reached unprecedented levels. During their first term of office they slashed investment in social and affordable housing and cut staffing levels in Council housing Departments.

“Their current flagship housing policy, Rebuilding Ireland, has been in place for two years and the crisis shows no sign of abating. The plans underinvestment in social and affordable housing and over reliance on the private sector to meet social and affordable housing need repeats the mistakes of previous Fianna Fáil administrations with the same disastrous results.

“Eoghan Murphy has been Minister for Housing for 15 months. During his tenure, homelessness has increased 25%, child homelessness has increased 34% and pensioner homelessness has increased by 40%. Rents and house prices continue to rise well beyond affordable levels.  Tens of thousands of homes lie vacant across the state. Real social housing output in 2018 will actually be lower than in 2017. Not a single affordable home has been delivered by any Government scheme under on his watch. And private sector supply is in the main overpriced and unaffordable.

“Meanwhile, the Minister responsible attacks Local Authorities, local councillors, and opposition parties in the Dáil for the failures of his Government. During his months in office, he has opted for spin over substance and, crucially, has not been willing to accept that his policies are failing.

“The true test of a Minister is that, when Government policy is not working, they have the courage to go to cabinet and propose a change of course. Instead, Minister Murphy continues to defend the indefensible. He is so out of touch and out of his depth that he doesn’t even realise that what he is doing is making the crisis worse.

“In light of all of this, Sinn Féin believes that he must go, but so too must Rebuilding Ireland. Our motion of no confidence makes clear that we need a change of Minister and a change of policy. Without both of these things, the housing crisis will continue to get worse.

“It is disappointing that Micheál Martin has so far refused to support our motion. If Fianna Fáil are content to allow a failing housing plan and failing Housing Minister to remain in place, that is a matter for them, but their support for Minister Eoghan Murphy and Rebuilding Ireland will come at a cost; increased homelessness, every greater number of peoples locked out of secure and affordable homes, ever growing social housing waiting lists, and rising government expenditure on subsidising social housing tenants in the private rented sector. Given that this was Fianna Fáil policy from 2007 to 2011, maybe it is not so surprising that they are willing to back Fine Gael on this issue.” 

Note: The Motion of No Confidence will read as follows:

This Dáil notes that

Fine Gael have been in office for seven years and during that time homelessness has increased to unprecedented levels, house prices and rents have spiralled out of control, and tens of thousands of households are unable to access secure and affordable homes

Rebuilding Ireland has been in place for two years and has clearly failed to address the causes of our housing crisis. Underinvestment in social and affordable housing and over reliance on the private sector has exacerbated the crisis

Eoghan Murphy has been Minister for Housing for 15 months and, on his watch, homelessness has increased 25%, child homelessness has increased 34%, pensioner homelessness has increased 40%; rents have increased 7% and house prices 6%, and social housing delivery remains glacial, not a single affordable home has been delivered by any central government scheme, private sector output in the main is overpriced and unaffordable, and vacant housing stock remains higher than the norm in comparable countries.

 This Dáil 

Does not have confidence in Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy and calls for him to be removed from office

Calls on the Government to accept that Rebuilding Ireland has failed and to urgently introduce a new housing plan that will meet social and affordable housing need through an ambitious programme of public housing provision and tackle homelessness through a greater focus on prevention and reduction of the length of time adults and children spend in emergency accommodation.

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