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Call on the Housing Minister to Address the Housing CrisisThe Housing Crisis is a countrywide problem that has reached epidemic proportions. In January 2018, over 9,500 individuals were struggling to survive in State-funded emergency accommodation, 184 individuals were sleeping rough in the winter of 2017 in Dublin and almost 100,000 people are on social housing lists. An ongoing issue, successive governments have failed to act. There are a number of issues underlying this problem, which affects vulnerable groups in various ways, including Travellers, asylum seekers, refugees and survivors of domestic abuse . A system-level change is required. To begin with, rent and property taxes must accord with the Housing Assistance Payment Scheme (HAP) and local authorities need to spend the funding allocated to investment in culturally appropriate housing for Travellers. People Before Profit outline a number of remedies, such as delimiting the right to private property and investing the capital from employment creation in social housing. Please sign this petition calling on The Housing Minister, Eoghan Murphy TD, to implement such practical and sustainable solutions to address this problem.
Build Public Housing Belcamp Lane/Northern CrossThe housing crisis is now worse than at any point in the state’s history - 10,000 Homeless (1,739 Homeless Families – 3, 755 Homeless Children) - Average Rents Across Dublin = €1,614 - Government subsidies to landlords in 2017 = over €623k - 600,000 young people stuck at home, unable to access housing according to last census It was recently reported that there is enough state owned land (local authority and NAMA) zoned for residential development to build over 110,000 units https://www.irishtimes.com/…/state-owns-enough-zoned-land-t… Yet what has Dublin City Council's approach been to the development of the land it owns? In the case of the Lawrence Lands (Oscar Traynor Rd) they plan to mostly privatised the site with developers being invited to construct all 600 plus units but keep 70% for themselves (50% purely for profit and 20% for an undefined ‘affordable’ rent) with just the remaining 30% for public housing. At this rate we will never house those on the housing list as well as the hundreds of thousands who cannot even apply for public housing let alone the additional demand the arises year on year. Rather than waiting for similar bad proposals for other council owned sites the initiative should be taken by housing campaigners and public representatives to propose how best public land can be used to help resolve the crisis. Solidarity's alternative proposal for Belcamp Lane/Northern Cross Local Solidarity Councillor Michael O'Brien is proposing an alternative approach across the state where public housing (social and affordable) is built on publicly owned land. Take the Belcamp Lane site at Northern Cross which is council owned but where there are no plans on the horizon to build housing. Solidarity proposes that some 500 apartments and duplexes, similar in design to Newtown Court could be built and made available for 50% social and 50% affordable housing to local people with a housing need. This would be financed through the Social Housing Investment Fund. Accommodation meeting the needs of the local Traveller community could also be delivered on this site. Cllr O'Brien engaged the voluntary services of an architect to come up with an indicated site plan which shows what could be done. In this plan there are - the are 119 units on each floor (i.e. 4 floors = 476 units, allowing for duplexes). - the 3 beds are 100m2, the 2 beds are 81m2, the studios are 45.5m2 (a duplex would be two studios one on top of the other). - all units (except at the north of the site) are accessed from the north and have southeast or southwest facing balconies, and share south facing gardens (the public open space is mostly divided up between the units in this way). - there are pedestrian routes connecting the blocks, so that some of the ground floor plans will be different to allow for this This is not a fixed proposal set in stone but a vision of what can be done. If community support can be built up for this proposal, taking on board further suggestions and amendments this plan will be brought to Dublin City Council's North Central Area Committee and Housing Special Policy Committee with a view to securing the support from other councillors and putting the ball in the court of the Council officials to seriously engage. Check out https://www.facebook.com/PublicHousingBelcampNorthernX/ for the progress of the campaign
Demand full rights for people with disabilities in Ireland - add your voiceAfter an 11-year delay, the Government recently took the final steps towards ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. However, it turns out that the government has for now abandoned its pledge to at the same time ratify a key protocol that goes along with the Convention. The protocol gives people with disabilities a real chance to achieve their rights in cases where the government is failing them. The protocol allows groups or individuals to make complaints to the UN to ensure the government does what it says it will do. This government has effectively turned its back on 640,000 people with disabilities in this State by failing to ratify this protocol.
Build Fair Rent Homes on St. Michael's EstateThis new cost rental housing model would be a self-financing approach to housing, involving State provision of housing which would be made available for rent to a mixture of households on medium or high incomes as well as those on the social housing waiting list. It’s a model that caters for all. The current system is not working, the housing crisis is crippling the lives of individuals, families and communities. In 2017 local authority data show that 100,000 people are on waiting lists for social housing in Ireland. Already successfully rolled out in Denmark and Switzerland, this housing model is guaranteed and permanent. It provides security of tenure and will put an end to people living hostage to rapidly increasing private rental rates, to unsustainable mortgages, and to the risk of debt, eviction and homelessness. Public land should be used for public good, not for profit. Almost 6.1 billion of public money has been paid out in rent supplement to private landlords in the last 17 years, alternatively that could have built well over 30,000 homes.
Save St.Annes ParkThis is important because money could be better spent in redevelopment in other areas of the city. The park is one of the few left in the city that has been left untouched for years. The park provides many community events throughout the year and brings people together for all types of occasions. This site was privately sold but still comes under the umbrella of the park so if this development goes ahead it opens the flood gates for endless destruction to the park through building. Where does it end?
"'Shame'rock for Trump - Not in our name"An Taoiseach is our representative abroad. When he accepts prejudice, racism and bigotry, it shames the people of our country. We feel that such an alliance is not good for our country's reputation and undermines our relationship with other countries. Trump is a despicable human being. A point must be reached where falling at the foot of a powerful man, at the expense of our values and morals and international reputation is not acceptable! "'Shame'rock for Trump: Not in our Name"
Place Pylons UndergroundEirgrid has an important job to ensure our energy needs are met. However this can not be at any cost. The only issue of placing lines underground for Eirgrid is an increase in cost. Surely protecting our beautiful country is worth the increase in cost. It is also important to protect important landmarks, such as the Hill of Tara, which is seeking UNESCO status. It is time to start looking to the future and build the Interconnector and other national projects underground where they will be safe from storms, and keep our country beautiful for the next generations (and tourists).
Carlow Needs A Women's RefugeCurrently Carlow Women's Aid are a frontline service for women and children experiencing violence and domestic abuse. The staff are a lifeline in Carlow and have helped to obtain 254 court orders and attended 388 court sittings in 2016 alone. SAFE Ireland provided a snapshot of one day in Ireland in 2015 - 505 women and 269 children sought support from a domestic violence service.112 women and 147 children were accommodated in a refuge. 18 women couldn't be accommodated in a refuge (SAFE Ireland, 2015). This huge lack of essential support services results in: Unmet requests for refuge everyday; Accommodation problems and homelessness; Staying in abusive relationships; Increasing likelihood returning to violent and abusive homes; Fear of reporting the abuse due to the lack of emergency accommodation available; This failure of affects women and children living with violence and abuse in their homes - people who are silenced and among some of the most vulnerable in the population.
Adequate Funding for Homelessness Shelter in AthloneAs per the Irish Times article on November 29th by Kitty Holland, homelessness among single adults is up 44% in the Midlands in the year since October 2016 and this shelter, having already cut its staffing is now facing closure (1). The assertion by the Department of Housing that "the needs of regions are kept under review on an ongoing basis" and "it will help to meet the costs faced by housing bodies." is clearly not of any value here. This shelter which also serves the needs of people in Laois, Longford and Offaly needs to be kept open and Midlands Simon has to be given concrete assurances that it will receive adequate funding as a matter of urgency. https://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/sole-westmeath-homeless-shelter-likely-to-close-over-funding-1.3308697
Don't Let People Die On Our Streets7 people have died on the streets of Dublin in the past 12 weeks. In our towns and cities there are thousands of people facing the winter without a roof over their heads - sleeping in cars, in tents, doorways, under bushes. Emergency accommodation is needed for everyone and must be made a priority this winter.