The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien TD  has approved funding of more than €23m million for the Disabled Persons Grant scheme (DPG) and Improvement Works In Lieu of social housing scheme (IWILs).

Every local authority will receive the funds they have requested to carry out works this year in 2021. Under both schemes, exchequer funding meets 90% of the cost of the works in each property, with the local authority providing the remaining 10%.

The DPG scheme provides funding for extensions and adaptations to existing social housing stock for older people and people with a disability such as grab rails, disabled access ramps, wet rooms, downstairs bedrooms etc. The scheme also provides extensions in cases of overcrowding.

The Improvement Works in Lieu of social housing scheme (IWILs) allows local authorities to improve or extend privately owned accommodation, where the applicant has been approved for social housing. It allows those who are otherwise eligible for social housing to remain in private housing and for enhancements to that housing.

Welcoming the funding Minister O’Brien said, “We’re delighted to be in a position this year to approve an overall increased budget and to approve funding to all local authorities for their requested amount in their programme of works.

“This will greatly improve the housing conditions for our older tenants and those living with disabilities. It will also address issues of overcrowding in existing social housing stock, while improvement works on private homes in lieu of social housing also provides an alternative for those currently experiencing overcrowding in private accommodation.

Through this scheme Government are saying clearly that we are committed to improving the lives of older people and people with a disability,” he concluded.