Next Taoiseach Must Listen To Alternative Solutions To Housing Crisis - SF

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD has said the next Taoiseach "must listen to policy alternatives for ending the housing crisis".

Mr Adams made the comments following the revelations that twelve families and thirty children presented at Garda stations on Tuesday night because they had nowhere else to go.

Teachta Adams said: "The housing and homelessness crisis is a direct result of the policies pursued the current government and previous administrations.

"This didn't happen by chance and it is not an accident that it is getting worse.

"The government likes to pretend that the crisis is a natural occurrence, beyond the influence of government. That is nonsense. The problem was created by the actions of government. It can be resolved by the actions of government.

"The next Taoiseach must set such an agenda within government. That is his duty.

"He must end the pretence that policy alternatives for addressing the housing crisis do not exist. He must realise the government's approach is wrong and that it is ruining lives. He must listen to what is being said, not just by Sinn Féin, but by housing advocacy groups.

"These solutions are being put forward in the Dáil on weekly basis but the government chooses to either ignore those proposals or to actively quash them.

"This is why you have families and children presenting at Garda stations with nowhere else to go. It is heart-breaking and unacceptable that children as young as nine are now reminiscing about a time when they had a home.

"The government must increase capital funding to local authorities to build social housing. It must take real action to tackle crisis rents and improve security of tenure. They must implement programmes to get the 183,000 vacant homes across the state back into use.

"Such steps would make a real and substantial difference.

"For any party with a genuine commitment to social justice, these matters would dominate a leadership election. However, it has barely impinged on the race to replace Enda Kenny as Fine Gael Leader."


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