The Social Democrats, as part of their Housing policy in GE2020 – Homes within Reach: Making housing available, making housing affordable – have called for essential Constitutional change as part of the resolution of the housing and homelessness crisis.
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Linda Hayden, the Social Democrats general election candidate for Kildare South says:
“ In the last homelessness figures of 2019 it is shown that there are 203 people homeless in Kildare alone and 19 in Laois. This is only the tip of the Iceberg as their are many families and people living in the box bedrooms of family homes Everyone should have a right to a home. Only recently my party colleague spoke about his experience of homelessnes and his current situation of being a member of the hidden homeless. Housing should be a fundamental right and it should be reflected in our constitution. Having housing in our constitution, would place responsibility on the Government to ensure that legislation,policy and delivery are met”.
Article 43 of the Constitution seeks to balance private property rights with the common good. The problem is that, too often, the common good loses out. This holds us back on reforming issues such as nationwide rent freezes, security of tenure and addressing upward-only rent reviews.
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“Radical steps need to be taken to end the housing crisis and to ensure that we will never have the level of homelessness that we are seeing today again.
If the State won’t take legal action on this, the Social Democrats are proposing to bring a referendum forward and let the people decide.
“I believe the people of this country would support a referendum such as this. Social Democracy, at its core, is about creating a fair society, where nobody is left behind”.