Government may have to accept 'failure' of its housing policy, group warns

There is also a fresh warning about vulture funds

Government may have to accept 'failure' of its housing policy, group warns

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The Government is being told it must build 90,000 social housing units or accept failure on its housing policy.

The National Social Monitor, published by Social Justice Ireland, says the current approach is not working and the private sector will never build social housing units on the scale required.

The 2017 edition outlines a range of policy issues that impact on people's well-being.

It also highlights specific areas which require attention and resources.

There is also a fresh warning about vulture funds adding to the housing crisis.

The Irish Independent claims there has been a ten-fold increase in the number of debt enforcement cases taken in the High Court.

The paper says that foreign funds have bought up large swathes of distressed Irish loans, and are now pursuing borrowers at a much faster rate than before.

High Court cases linked to vulture funds have reportedly gone up from 53 in 2016, to more than 500 so far this year.

The director of Social Justice Ireland is Dr Seán Healy.

He says the only way to solve the housing crisis is to build enough social housing units to eliminate the current waiting list.

"Neither the scale of what the Government is doing, nor the structure of how it's doing it, is really anywhere close to what is required to tackle the current crisis that we have.

"There are 90,000 households - not individuals, households - on waiting lists at the moment; yet the Government's plan provides for only half of that amount of social housing to be provided over the next five or six years."

"We're depending on the private sector to deliver, and the private sector simply will never deliver this.

"So it has to be a situation in which Government intervenes, builds 90,000 social hosing units - or else accepts failure on its housing policy".