HOUSING continues to remain the dominant theme at the Labour Party's national conference in Cork today as Labour Party representatives reacted angrily to claims from Fine Gael TD Richard Bruton.
Fine Gael Parliamentary Party Chairman Richard Bruton said this morning that Labour party representatives from their leader down have objected to or expressed concerns regarding more than 10,000 planned homes in Dublin City since 2020.
Deputy Bruton added: “By objecting to housing, Labour and other opposition parties are ensuring many families are locked out of the housing market.”
This prompted a strong rebuttal from Senator Marie Sherlock who said there is a broken system of housing nationwide.
Ms Sherlock said it is no coincidence that homelessness is at such record levels because of decisions made by Fine Gael.
“It is no accident that we have homelessness at such record levels because Fine Gael in particular in government have made decisions to vest land right across the state in the hands of private developers and have hobbled local authorities. That is where the real crisis is. Fine Gael in government have made very clear decisions about who they want to build and who they don’t want to house.”
Deputy Aodhán Ó Ríordáin said Richard Bruton’s attack was classic deflection tactics by Fine Gael.
“The issue on the ground is that Labour councillors and representatives want good quality housing. We don’t want private developers to make endless cash and profit out of developments that we won’t be able to ask them about in five or ten-years’ time when they reconstitute their company.
"We will always stand beside those who have questions about planning in their communities. No Labour politician in my constituency has ever objected to social housing,” he added.
“We want the local authorities to proactively engage in building local authority housing,” said Deputy Ó Ríordáin.
“As a party we have never stood for allowing private developers to do what they want on land that isn’t zoned for housing. We don’t believe the system is well run by having it completely in the hands of private developers.”