Belfast Telegraph

Mark Durkan hits out at lack of affordable housing

SDLP Social Development spokesman Mark H Durkan has welcomed the publication of the Housing Strategy for Northern Ireland, but says he’s concerned it offers nothing new.

The Foyle MLA said: “There are a number of positive aspects to this strategy such as regulation of HMOs and a review of the Social Housing Allocation policy but regrettably there is little in it that is new.

“Lack of housing is a critical issue right across the north. The problem is particularly acute in my own constituency of Derry where over 3,000 people and families are on the housing list, the majority of whom are in urgent need of a home.”

He said there needs to be more done to address the building of new, affordable housing.

“This strategy... lacks detail and ambition in terms of new builds,” he added.

“The fact is that the number of social houses being built has reduced dramatically under Mr McCausland’s watch.

“I have pressed the minister to do all in his power to stop this decline and secure additional funding from the Executive to build more homes than the levels currently budgeted for and planned.”

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