Three-fold rise in families resettled


The Housing Executive in Northern Ireland yesterday revealed that three times as many families had been forced out of their homes this year due to intimidation compared to last year. The cost of resettling these families is estimated to have cost more than £7 million.

The executive's annual report shows that 60 families approached it for emergency housing in the aftermath of the Drumcree standoff last summer. More than 180 families needed emergency rehousing after this summer's unrest. The executive chairman, Mr Sid McDowell, has said the money could have been better spent on other areas.

"Hopefully, the improving political climate will help to ensure that our resources are no longer being needlessly wasted on buying properties from people who have been intimidated, bricking up unwanted homes in flashpoint areas or repairing bomb-damaged homes," said Mr McDowell.