Pearse Doherty TD says government has forgotten about mortgage crisis
Sinn Féin Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has said the government has forgotten about the 80,000 families in mortgage arrears. He said the promises in the programme for government have been watered down, put on the long finger or simply dropped altogether.
Speaking at a Public Meeting in Swords organised by Louise O’Reilly TD Deputy Doherty said:
“In December the Central Bank published its latest figures on mortgage arrears. A total of 79,562 (11 per cent) of accounts were in arrears. This is still a huge crisis happening day and day out for the thousands of Irish people. Yet it barely gets a mention any more from the government.
"421 properties were taken into possession by lenders during the third quarter of 2016. That is over 4 homes a day being taken over. The government think this issue is gone away- they think it’s in the past. They are wrong.
"Promises to review the insolvency thresholds and set up a new Special Mortgages Court sit on the legislative programme 6 months after they were due to be published. A commitment that the Central Bank would amend the Code of Conduct seems to have been rebuffed altogether by Governor Lane.
"The Abhaile- MABS service is up and running but is only scratching the surface in the numbers of people in arrears it has helped out. This government in permanent crisis has well and truly taken its eye off the ball when it comes to mortgages.
"Sinn Féin will put in placed real solutions, not promises.
"We will protect the Family Home in law to a greater degree. My legislation to do exactly that was voted down in 2013. We also do not accept that vultures are part of the solution. If we can’t get rid of them they need to be taxed, regulated and not fed by the State’s own banks.
"The 80,000 families in arrears deserve to be front and centre in political debate. This is not an issue that has gone away.”