June 29, 2020
Eoin Ó Broin TD writes to Housing Minister on damning social housing human rights report

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Housing Eoin Ó Broin TD has written to the new Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien asking him how he intends to address the damning findings of an Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission report published today.

The IHREC report highlights the state’s failure to address appalling breaches of human rights in social housing.

Teachta Ó Broin said: “The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission submission to the Council of Europe on Ireland’s 17th National Report on the Implementation of the European Social Charter was published this morning.

“The submission highlighted the government’s failure to take action to remedy poor conditions in social housing, to guarantee access to housing supply, and the ongoing lack of provision of Traveller-specific accommodation.

“In terms of Traveller accommodation, the submission outlines the failure of some local authorities to draw down funding. It also references the fact that overcrowding is an issue on Traveller accommodation sites and how it is also an issue within social housing.

“Residents of Balgaddy estate in my own constituency in Dublin Mid-West – one of the communities mentioned in the collective complaint to the Council of Europe in 2015 – continue to experience damp and mould problems with their homes.

“The submission highlights the gap in demand and the delivery of new social homes, with fewer than 10% of the population living in social housing.

“It also acknowledges the state’s over reliance on the private rental market to house families due to the lack of real social housing.

“The IHREC make a number of recommendations. They include the implementation of the recommendations of the Expert Group on Traveller Accommodation, enshrining the Right to Housing in the Constitution, ensuring that emergency accommodation, such as family hubs, is only used for the shortest amount of time possible, and delivering real social homes.

“Unfortunately, the Programme for Government contained no mention of implementing the expert group report on Traveller Accommodation, or on a referendum on the Right to Housing or any commitment to deliver more than the previous government’s commitment of 50,000 social homes.”

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