Renters need certainty on extension of eviction ban this week
Labour leader and housing spokesperson Ivana Bacik has expressed her disappointment that a decision to extend the eviction ban was not confirmed as part of the cost of living supports package announced today.
Under questioning by Deputy Bacik in the Dáil today, Taoiseach Varadkar confirmed for the first time that a decision will be made on the matter by the Government in the next 2-3 weeks.
Deputy Bacik said renters need certainty now.
Deputy Bacik said:
“Labour is calling on Government to provide confirmation urgently to renters on whether the temporary eviction ban will be extended.
“The eviction ban introduced last year is due to expire for many renters at the end of March, yet the rental market remains as overheated now as it did then. Many renters, families and households, are extremely anxious that they will be evicted once the ban is lifted, and I am deeply concerned that this will lead to a further rise in homelessness.
“For the Taoiseach to defer a decision on this for several weeks more is an insult to the many renters who have little certainty in terms of their security of tenure and assurance that they will have a roof over their heads come April.
“Nearly two weeks ago the Dáil debated a Labour Party motion, setting out eight measures to alleviate the worst effects of the housing crisis. Chief among those were the extension of the eviction ban through to the end of the year, the ramping up of the tenant in situ scheme, and the use of emergency powers to convert vacant properties back into use as homes. Government voted against our motion, and the Minister for Housing didn’t even bother to attend the debate.
“Building enough houses to deal with the pressure of demand will take time; which is why Labour has called for the extension of the temporary eviction ban and greater rights for renters to offer them protection and certainty.
“Those who continue to face unaffordable rent hikes cannot wait for the market to solve this. They need action from government now. They are real people and families with limited incomes and whose most basic need, a roof over their heads, is costing more than they can pay.
“I am urging Government to give renters an answer this week on the extension of the eviction ban.”