Fianna Fáil bye-election candidate for Carlow-Kilkenny Bobby Aylward has said a comprehensive investment programme is needed to tackle the escalating housing crisis in Kilkenny.
Mr Aylward made the comments after addressing the Fianna Fáil Ard Fheis where he outlined the importance of supporting the right to a family home. Fianna Fáil published extensive proposals at the Ard Fheis aimed at tackling the growing housing crisis.
Speaking following the Ard Fheis Mr Aylward commented, “Across Ireland there is a serious housing crisis that is threatening the dream of home ownership. It is becoming impossible for families to secure their own home which satisfies the most basic of needs.
“The problem is particularly bad in Kilkenny where nearly 2,400 people have been stuck on waiting lists for years on end. There was a 40% increase in waiting lists nationally in 2014. Despite this the Government has not taken the necessary steps to address this crisis. The recent housing announcement will do little to reverse the growing number of people languishing on waiting lists.
“I spoke about this housing crisis at the Fianna Fáil Ard Fheis. I highlighted how home ownership is becoming a distant hope for more and more people while young people find their wages being sucked up by soaring rent levels, making it impossible for them to save money to one day be able to purchase their own home.
“We need to face up to reality and admit that a comprehensive investment plan in housing is needed. People in Kilkenny need great housing programmes similar to the ones launched by Fianna Fáil in the 30’s and 50’s. This means building homes in the right places and supporting people who want to buy them.
“Fianna Fáil launched comprehensive proposals at our Ard Fheis to achieve just that. The proposals include a commitment to invest in 150,000 homes nationally and to facilitate 80,000 first time buyers to purchase a suitable place that they can call home. Our plan will also see the construction of 45,000 homes for those stuck on housing waiting lists for years on end.
“It is time for the Government to recognise the true extent of the housing crisis. Fianna Fáil is the only party that has put forward comprehensive and far reaching proposals in this area. This is a top priority for me that I will be pursuing at every opportunity if elected to Dáil Éireann” said Mr Aylward.