Brid argues that Coveney’s housing bill represents an attack on the planning process, while pretending to address rent contol. She cites delaying tactics and failure to bring in adequate rent controls currently and historically, as examples of Fianna Fail, as well as Fine Gael, consistently serving the interests of the landlord class and REIT fund holders.

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Right2housing protest in September  with Cllrs Brid Smith and Tina MacVeigh highlighting scandal of empty houses while families are homeless
Right2housing protest in September with People Before Profit Cllrs, Brid Smith and Tina MacVeigh, highlighting scandal of empty houses while families are homeless

The Junior Minister with responsibility for housing, Paudie Coffey has finally admitted that there is an ‘emergency situation’ after a shocking RTE documentary appeared on housing.

Brid Smith, from People Before Profit said,

‘This government is speaking a different language in the weeks before the election than in the weeks beforehand.

‘One of the junior Ministers has admitted there is a housing emergency but his government has persistently refused to declare an official emergency.

‘Such a declaration would have allowed the government to speed up the social house building programme and impose a special levy on vacant properties that are left idle for speculative purposes.

‘The reality is that this government has turned its back on social housing and has invested less in this sector than any government for the past twenty five years.

‘Their primary aim is to re-stimulate the property bubble and that is why they prefer to subsidise private landlords than build social housing.

‘Just 55 social housing units, on average, have been built in Dublin in each of the last six years.

‘Efforts to curb rising rents have also been puny. The two year restriction on rent rises only means that tenants get a double rent whammy whereas real rent control would mean rents are tied to the rate of inflation.

‘We need a real change so that housing is not seen as a commodity but as a social right.’

For more information- Cllr Bríd Smith ( 087 909 0166)
Twitter- @bridsmith

housing

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A demonstration to highlight homelessness and the need for meaningfull housing policies and actions, was held this evening outside the Dail. It marked the anniversary of the death of  homeless man Jonathan Corrie. Right2Housing campaign supported the protest of around 1,000 people, who marched from the Spire to the Dail. Cllr Brid Smith who helped build the campaign and protest this evening said “Its a national disgrace that this government’s policies have made the situation worse not better, for people who are homeless as well as those in fear of homelessness. We need immediate rent caps, an end to evictions and a massive programme of social housing”.

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Press Release

23/10/2015

A combination of rent controls and a massive social housing programme is needed to solve housing crisis

People Before Profit has refuted the claims which have surfaced today in the press, that rent controls will not work.

Cllr Bríd Smith said: “What we have seen today and over the last while is a tidal wave of neo-liberal dogma. For anyone to suggest that rent controls are not an absolute necessity is absurd. One example that we can see is from Berlin. On June 1st of this year the Germany government brought in a new set of rules that limit rent increases within a given area, the average cost of new rents in that area dropped by 3.1% within a month. In other German cities that do not have these rent controls rents have remained static.

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