Wednesday 16 October 2019

Government defeated on motion calling for housing crisis to be declared a national emergency

CHALLENGING TIMES: Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy
CHALLENGING TIMES: Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy
Laura Larkin

Laura Larkin

The Government has been defeated on a motion calling for the housing and homelessness crisis to be declared a national emergency.

The motion - put forward by Solidarity-People Before Profit - was supported by all opposition parties in the Dáil and a number of Independents. It was carried by 83 votes and was supported by Peter Fitzpatrick who this week resigned from Fine Gael.

The motion calls for the declaration of the housing crisis as a national emergency to allow measures such as a nationwide rent freeze to be implemented.

Ahead of a debate on the motion in the Dáil on Wednesday more than 10,000 people took to the streets in protest calling for increased action on housing.

The Government has defended its record on the area of housing and has said that progress is being made on the supply of the housing amid stinging criticism from opposition TDs.

Speaking in the Dáil ahead of the vote Tanáiste Simon Coveney said the Government “understands the frustration of many people who marched yesterday to make a point on housing”. 

“We are in the midst of a very pressurised situation for many families who are renting, cannot afford to purchase their own home or are waiting for social housing,” he said as he reiterated plans to deliver 100,000 social homes in the next ten years.

Mr Coveney said the housing market “takes time to fix”.

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