Main parties quizzed on housing policies at hustings
Northern Ireland’s housing needs, issues and policy were at the heart of political debate on Monday as candidates from the five main parties contesting the Assembly Elections attended a special Housing Hustings in NICVA’s offices at Duncairn Gardens.
Organised by the National House-Building Council (NHBC) in association with the Chartered Institute of Housing and Northern Ireland Federation of Housing Associations, the event enabled representatives from the housing industry — including builders, architects, social housing providers, building suppliers, housing associations and other key public and private housing stakeholders — to hear Alliance, DUP, SDLP, Sinn Féin and Ulster Unionist candidates outline their party’s housing priorities and quiz them ahead of the 5 May Stormont election.
David Little, NHBC Regional Director Northern Ireland, said: “Housing, both socially and economically is critical to the future of Northern Ireland and today’s Housing Hustings provided a valuable opportunity for the industry to hear each of the party’s plans for this crucial policy area.
“The housing agenda is important to so many areas of life here.
“It is an integral part of the strategy on a Shared Future, while the economic consequences of the housing market, as well as tenant rights, rural housing needs and rating reform are issues key to the industry both now and in the future.”
Grainia Long, Director of Chartered Institute of Housing, Northern Ireland, said: “We have heard from our politicians that this is an election campaign focused on ‘bread and butter issues’ and housing is very much a ‘bread and butter issue’.
“Housing policy impacts on everyone in our society, so it is important that the candidates in this election understand the issues and that the parties recognise the value of good housing – in providing homes for people and also in promoting economic growth, health and well-being and educational attainment.