Sinn Féin motion on private rental standards accepted by Government
Eoin Ó Broin says recent RTÉ investigation highlighted State’s failure to protect tenants
The RTÉ Investigates documentary went undercover to show people living in sub-standard rental accommodation, with bunk beds packed into rooms.
The Government has accepted a Sinn Féin Private Members’ motion calling for a plan to ensure standards in the private rented sector.
Sinn Féin housing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin told the Dáil on Tuesday night that increasing the number of inspections to an adequate level would require additional resources from central Government.
“If some councils can achieve inspection levels of 25 per cent annually, then all should be obliged to do so as a matter of urgency and resourcing should not be an obstacle,’’ he said.
Mr Ó Broin said a recent investigation by the RTÉ’s Prime Time programme was shocking.
Breaches of fire safety regulations, putting tenants lives in danger, was exposed, he said.
“It highlighted levels of overcrowding that many people assumed had vanished with the demolition of the tenements in the 1940s and 50s,’’ he added.
“It detailed the failure of landlords to respond to requests for essential maintenance and repairs.’’
Mr Ó Broin said, it had worst of all, highlighted the State’s failure to enforce minimum standards and to protect tenants.
Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy said the Government’s strategy involved the introduction of new standards and a commitment of funding for increased inspections and a new system of compliance.