Housing biggest challenge for workers and families – will government take direct action?
Labour leader and housing spokesperson Ivana Bacik has demanded that government revise upwards the targets inHousing for All to address the crisis that has become a critical barrier to growth.
Deputy Bacik said warning from Ibec echoes that of the calls made by the Labour Party to deliver and expand upon affordable housing options for workers and families .
Deputy Bacik said:
“From a workers’ perspective, many are making career and income altering decisions based on the lack of viable, affordable homes. Now that the business lobby have reiterated these concerns, I hope that the Government will stand up and take action. We need to see much more ambitious housing targets that reflect the makeup of our population.
“The preliminary Census data shows that our population is rising above 5 million people, yet there has been no meaningful and evidence based review of the Housing for All strategy to account for that increase.
“Labour is reiterating its demand that Government take the lead and build homes for people who need them. I would also urge Minister O’Brien to look at the four stage procurement process currently in place.
“We need the Land Development Agency (LDA) to be empowered to build housing itself. This must be done on public land and deliver affordable housing. The purpose of the LDA was to develop housing on public land. To ensure that homes would are delivered quickly we need the LDA to build homes itself at pace.
“As Ibec says, a lack of affordable housing supply is of huge concern to business. That’s because this Government has ignored the pleas of workers to grasp this generational crisis. To tackle this urgently, we need to see more public land made available for social and affordable housing, including schemes of affordable home ownership.
“Today I am visiting Drogheda where hundreds of people are commuting daily to Dublin for work. We should have an ambition for our cities that they can be a viable option for people who want to live and work there. With business expressing its concern, Government’s failure to tackle the crisis of our times may impact future prosperity for all in Ireland.”