Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin said yesterday that Government plans to introduce legislation to ban evictions from the private rented sector and to freeze rents is ‘a welcome first move for renters’.
Deputy Ó Broin said:
"Today’s announcement by Eoghan Murphy that he will bring forward legislation next week to ban evictions from the private rented sector during the Covid-19 crisis is a welcome first step for renters.
"I am a strong critic of Minister Murphy and Fine Gael’s failed housing policy. However, parties must work together to protect workers and families during the Covid-19 crisis.
"I spoke to Minister Murphy today and he outlined what he intends to put in the legislation. If the legislation is robust, freezes rents and protects renters affected by loss of income from eviction, then it is to be welcomed.
"The legislation also needs to suspend all existing Notices to Quit and related Residential Tenancies Board processes.
"Protections also need to be extended to lodgers and those in rent-a-room arrangements.
"Sinn Féin will approach this legislation in a constructive spirit and support the Minister. However, Government needs to do more to ensure that renters have access to an emergency Covid-19 rent supplement payment.
"Equally, Government must seriously examine the possibility of temporary rent reductions and rent waivers for tenants whose landlords who are availing of mortgage repayment forbearance."