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Rent supplement increase welcome but needs to happen in parallel with rent certainty

28 June, 2016 - by John Brady TD, Eoin Ó Broin TD


Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD and Social Protection spokesperson John Brady TD have welcomed a proposed increase in rent supplement and the housing assistance payment but warned that it must be done in parallel with rent certainty to ensure that it has the desired effect of easing the burden on families at risk of homelessness.

Speaking today Deputy Ó Broin said;

“Just two weeks ago the government, assisted by Fianna Fáil, voted down Sinn Féin’s rent certainty bill which would have linked rents to the consumer price index.

“This was designed to ensure that landlords cannot increase rents by unscrupulous amounts, pushing families further into poverty and increasing the risk of homelessness.

“We welcome today’s proposal to increase rent supplement and the housing assistance payment as it could have the effect of easing the burden on struggling families.

“But unless it is done in parallel with rent certainty there is a risk that landlords will absorb this increase by simply increasing rents further.”

Deputy John Brady said;

“On the face of it this is a welcome move by the government but the worry for most families in receipt of rent supplement is that they will now be met with demands from their landlords for increased rents.

“So the government must look again at its position on rent certainty otherwise a lot of the cost of this increase will end up in the back pockets of landlords across the state while the struggling families that this move is designed to help will continue to struggle to keep a roof over their heads.”

ENDS

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