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Sinn Féin MLA raises emergency housing issue in East Derry with DSD Minister

22 November, 2012 - by Cathal Ó hOisín

Sinn Féin MLA Cathal Ó hOisín said he is hopeful that the provision of emergency housing within East Derry will be addressed.

His comments come after a recent meeting with Department of Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland.

The East Derry MLA said:

“I expect the Minister to impress upon the Housing Executive, housing associations and those from the voluntary sector the need to address the provision of emergency housing in East Derry.

“Given property prices and current availability there never has been a better time to do so. In recent years we have had the ridiculous situation where people in dire need of emergency housing have been relocated from Coleraine and Limavady to a hotel, hostel or other accommodation in Belfast, Derry and Ballymena.

“This is despite the fact that there are many empty properties in the area that the applicant originally lived

 “We also had the situation in Coleraine where people intimidated out of their homes in sectarian attacks were offered emergency housing in areas from where it was suspected their attackers lived.

“Further to this there is no provision for emergency housing on the west bank of the Bann in Coleraine. The Minister has promised to tackle this at the earliest opportunity and that is to be welcomed.

 “At a time when people are at their most vulnerable they are being asked to accept far from satisfactory temporary solutions.”

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