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Sinn Féin launch Bill to enshrine Right to Housing in the Constitution - Ó Broin

5 May, 2016 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD

Sinn Féin has today launched a Bill that would enshrine the Right to Housing in the Constitution.

Speaking at the launch Deputy Ó Broin said:

“The crisis in our housing system is getting worse by the day. 2000 children will tonight sleep in emergency accommodation. Families are being made homeless every single day. Thousands of others are living in expensive, insecure and at times substandard accommodation.

"Never before has there been a greater need to enshrine the right to affordable, appropriate and safe housing in our Constitution.

“This Bill we are launching today calls on the State to recognise the right of all citizens to adequate, appropriate, secure, safe and affordable housing.

“This is not a novel idea. Eighty-one countries across the world have the right to housing recognised in the Constitutions

“This is something the government could act on without delay and it would provide a basic floor of protection for the increasing numbers of people facing homelessness.”

“A Constitutional right to Housing would not mean the right to a key to a home for all; however what it does do is require the State to make reasonable provision to protect this right in its policy and decision making.

“There is currently no legal right to housing in Irish law and the lack of a substantive right to housing is highlighted by the plight of families facing homelessness”

“Currently, the failure to provide a family with emergency accommodation cannot be challenged by referencing a clear right. A right to housing would essentially give the courts the jurisdiction to review whether that right is being respected.

“The people of this state have already deliberated on this issue. Over 80% of the participants in The Constitutional Convention agreed that such a right should be enshrined in the Constitution. The incoming Government should provide for the holding of a referendum on this issue in its programme for government.”

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