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Conway-Walsh raises the plight of Mayo homeowners affected by Pyrite

16 June, 2016 - by Rose Conway-Walsh

Sinn Féin Group leader in the Seanad Rose Conway-Walsh this week questioned Minister of State for Housing and Urban Renewal about the urgency of dealing with the Pyrite issue in Erris and Mayo.

Together with her colleague, Donegal Senator Padraig MacLochlainn, they called Minister English to the Seanad to answer questions on what remedies the Government was proposing for households affected.

Senator Conway-Walsh expressed disappointment that the recent Prime Time programme had ignored the devastation caused by pyrite in Co. Mayo.

Addressing the Minister she said:

“I welcome the setting up of the expert group but I am absolutely dismayed that it has indicated it will not now come to Mayo until September. That is not good enough. We know the only solution to this is the demolition of buildings. Despite a representative group meeting with the Department of Environment in March 2014 and submitting photographic and undisputed evidence that their homes were affected by pyrite, homeowners are now being asked for the same paperwork.”

“Some of these homeowners have had to flee their homes while others watch their walls crumbling around them. They have had to stand by and watch a compensation scheme being put in place for homeowners in the East.  How much longer are these homeowners going to have to wait for the relief scheme?”

“Will the Minister of State consider intervening with the Central Bank so a stay can be put on the mortgages of these people who are being crucified paying mortgages while paying rent as well?

“Are there proper standards now in place and are we sure this is not happening this very day?  The state must accept responsibility for its lack of regulation on materials supplied by quarries.”

Minister English gave Senator Conway-Walsh a commitment that he would come to Mayo in the near future to visit homes affected and meet the homeowners.

Senator Conway-Walsh conclude; “It is important that Minister English visits as a matter of urgency and also meets with public representatives and Mayo County Council during his visit”.

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