Use of unregulated private security firms by banks demands Government action - Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD
Sinn Féin Justice Spokesperson Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD has said that the increasing use of unregulated and unaccountable private security firms by the banks to enforce court orders is extremely serious, and demands Government action and legislative change.
Teachta Ó Laoghaire said;
"We have seen recently in Dublin how masked men were assisted by Gardaí in evicting housing activists from a property in the city. This cannot be allowed to continue.
"The scenes from the eviction in Roscommon were an outright disgrace, with private security being given apparent free reign to do as they wish to the people being evicted. It brought to mind scenes from our past of people being thrown out on to the side of the road.
"Those who are undertaking repossessions are not covered by the Private Security Services Act. The PSA have themselves confirmed this to me. After the incident in Frederick St, we called upon the Government to amend the Act to ensure that they would be covered. The Government has not acted, and we will be publishing shortly legislation which will cover this.
"Pressure also needs to be brought on the banks who are using these masked men to turf people out of their homes. KBC Bank cannot simply shrug its shoulders and pass this off as an issue for the Gardaí.
"The reality is that this incident has arose as a result of the housing crisis which is getting worse under this government.
"The government refuses to bring forward workable solutions to the housing crisis and votes against measures brought forward by the opposition such as the Focus Ireland amendment and the anti-eviction legislation which passed second stage recently despite government opposition.
"The government must re-look at its position on the anti-eviction legislation and ensure that it progresses through all stages in the Oireachtas as quickly as possible."