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SF demands Government set target for elimination of social housing waiting lists

25 October, 2005


Sinn Féin spokesperson on Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Arthur Morgan T.D., today in Dáil questioned the Minister for State with responsibility for Housing Noel Ahern T.D. regarding the failure of the Government to address the needs of those on social housing waiting lists. He also challenged the Government regarding whether or not it supported proposals from the NESC for an increase of 73,000 units of permanent social housing units.

Deputy Morgan said, "This Government is not committed to addressing the needs of those on social housing waiting lists. No amount of waffle from Minister of State Ahern can hide this fact. There are 48,000 families on housing waiting lists according to last available fgure. We are still wating for updated figures to be published. At the start of this year 40 % of those in the private rented sector were in receipt of rent supplement. That is 57,714 people who should be housed in social housing. The population is increasing. Social housing need is not likely to decline in the future yet the government does not seem to have any strategy to meet these needs.

"I am asking the Minister if his department has set a time frame for the elimination of housing waiting lists? If there is no target for the elimination of housing waiting lists they will not be eliminated.

"The Minister of state must make it clear whether or not the Government supports the proposals in the NESC report on housing for an increase of 73,000 units of permanent social housing units in net terms between 2005 and 2012."

Speaking following his heated exchange with Minister of State Noel Ahern, Deputy Morgan said that he was thoroughly unsatisfied with the Minister's response. ENDS

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