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Housing Minister's denial of crisis shows that he is not fit for role - Dessie Ellis TD

1 October, 2014 - by Dessie Ellis TD

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Dessie Ellis TD has blasted new Junior Minister for Housing Paudie Coffey TD after he denied there was a crisis in housing calling the dire situation a "challenge". The Minister made his comments in an interview at a conference held today by the Construction Industry Federation dealing with issues relating to the crisis.

Deputy Ellis said;

"Either Paudie Coffey is insulting our intelligence or he is completely misinformed on the scale of the housing need in our state. Whatever it is it shows he is not fit for the role of dealing with the crisis.

“Everyone in the housing sector, all the councils, local representative I know and every housing and homeless charity are in agreement that have a social housing crisis on a very large scale which requires a serious approach and major investment to begin resolving.

“Since this government have taken office the number of people on the housing waiting list has gone up by 30,000 people. There are nearly 40,000 more people either in need of housing or currently being inadequately housed by the state never mind all the people in existing council housing which is falling apart.

“Rents have increased in Dublin by 26% since 2011 while Rent Supplement has been cut. We have more people in homelessness than ever before. We have more rough sleepers. We have 1,500 adults and 640 dependent children in emergency accommodation and we're spending 4 million a year in Dublin putting families in hotels rather than homes.

“If this isn't a crisis then nothing is. Junior Minister Paudie Coffey needs to either get real with himself or get real with the public. The well over 100,000 people on waiting lists depend on him and his government to begin tackling the crisis, if they can't even admit it exists then we are in big trouble but it is those vulnerable families who will suffer most."

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