‘Worst decision the Government has made’

April 5, 2023 in Featured News, News

Peter McVerry SJ has publicly condemned the Irish Government’s controversial lifting of the temporary ban on evictions saying that the move is “the most controversial, I think the worst decision the government has made in its lifetime” and will lead to “a tsunami of misery” for those evicted from their homes. He was speaking on Today With Clare :Byrne on RTE Radio One »

In March 2023, the Irish government announced that it would be lifting the ban on evictions, citing improvements in the economy and the housing market. But Peter McVerry, along with the homelessness charity The McVerry Trust and other housing charities, has argued that the decision will have devastating consequences for those who are already struggling to find affordable and secure housing.

Fr McVerry also criticized the government for prioritizing the interests of landlords and property developers over the needs of vulnerable people. He argued that the housing market in Ireland is deeply flawed and that the government’s decision to lift the ban on evictions will only exacerbate the existing crisis.

Many people who are at risk of eviction are already living in insecure accommodation, said Peter McVerry adding that they are also facing discrimination from landlords. He argued that the government has a moral obligation to protect its citizens from homelessness and that lifting the ban on evictions is a clear failure to meet that obligation.

Fr McVerry called on the government to extend the ban on evictions and to take more decisive action to address the root causes of homelessness in Ireland. He argued that this would require a significant investment in affordable housing, as well as measures to tackle poverty and inequality.

Despite the criticism, the Irish Government has defended the lifitng of the ban, arguing that it is necessary to address the country’s housing crisis. They claim that the legislation will make it easier for landlords to invest in new properties, which will ultimately lead to an increase in the supply of affordable housing.

However, Peter McVerry argues that eviction is a short-sighted solution to a much deeper problem. He says that the root cause of the housing crisis in Ireland is the lack of affordable housing, and that the government needs to take more proactive steps to address this issue, such as investing in social housing and introducing rent controls.

There is also the broader issues of social justice and inequality that underpin the crisis he argues, saying that ultimately, if Ireland is to tackle this crisis and ensure that everyone has access to safe, secure, and affordable housing, it will need to adopt a more comprehensive and compassionate approach to housing policy.