Sinn Féin spokesperson on Housing, Eoin Ó Broin TD, has called on Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien to speedily implement the recommendations from the Residential Tenancies Board on illegal evictions.
Deputy Ó Broin has also questioned why Minister O’Brien has sat on this report since November 2022’ and ‘whether consideration of the recommendations formed part of the government discussions on ending the ban on evictions.
The comments were made following publication of the RTB report and cover letter by the Dublin Inquirer today.
Teachta Ó Broin said:
“Last November, Darragh O’Brien received a detailed report from the Residential Tenancies Board on the issue of illegal evictions. The report had been requested by the Minister on foot of a number of high profile illegal evictions in 2020.
“The report, which had been completed in October 2021 but could not be issued to the Minister for legal reasons, contains five recommendations. A cover letter with the report dated November 2022 sets out four further recommendations made in light of subsequent illegal evictions.
“Today I have written to Minister O’Brien asking him to set out his response to the recommendations and a timeline for any legislation he intends to introduce on foot of the report.
“The recommendations by the RTB are eminently sensible. They include the need for trained illegal eviction facilitators at the RTB; inclusion of illegal eviction as an improper conduct by a landlord; issuing of significant fines for carrying out an illegal eviction; and powers to the Gardai to arrest without a warrant anyone participating in an illegal eviction.
“Darragh O’Brien must speedily implement the Residential Tenancies Board recommendations on illegal evictions. They will produce additional protections for tenants at a time when there is likely to be an increase in illegal evictions.
“Minister O’Brien must also explain why he has sat on this report since last November. Did this report form part of the government’s considerations when ending the ban on no-fault evictions? Did they discuss the RTB recommendations before ending the ban? What decision was taken by government with respect to each of the nine recommendations in the report and cover letter.
“In addition to raising this matter in writing with the Minister, I will also be raising it with the Oireachtas Housing Committee in the coming weeks.”