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Social Housing Targets for 2013 will not be met under current strategy

23 April, 2009 - by Fra McCann

 Sinn Féin MLA, Fra McCann, has called on Nigel Dodd’s to challenge the Social Development Minister to give an honest assessment as to where her Programme for Government commitments towards the reaching of targets for social and affordable housing currently sit.

Speaking today Mr McCann said: 

“All indications from the housing market and construction sector show that there is currently a serious shortfall in the provision of social and affordable housing and that the commitments of reaching Public Service Agreement target of 10,000 social and affordable units by 2013 will in no way be met. How Nigel Dodd’s can believe this is alarming.

“His statement also hides the fact that many other aspects of housing have been seriously hit to make up some semblance of the social housing programme targets being reached.

“Schemes such as kitchen refurbishments, essential maintenance and window replacements have born the brunt of poor budgetary management in order to buy up housing stock to try and meet these targets.

“This is not the strategy that will create new housing developments and increase housing numbers which is a serious concern given that there are 40,000 people on the waiting list and 20,000 under housing stress. This short sighted approached is stocking up problems.

“Sinn Féin have been to the fore in calling for a proper strategy to deal with the serious crisis in housing long before the current economic downturn. Nigel Dodd’s needs to challenge the Minister for Social Development to give an honest assessment where her Programme for Government commitments sit at present.”

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