Wicklow Sinn Féin public representatives have expressed deep concerns about the lifting of the ban on evictions.
Wicklow Sinn Féin TD John Brady said “I have deep concerns about the lifting of the eviction ban, especially when we are still experiencing the effects of Covid. I think that it’s highly probable that families will be presenting to emergency services once the ban on evictions is lifted on Thursday. The ban had been a vital protection for thousands of renters, and it was a mistake for the government to end it. No renter should be faced with an eviction notice or a rent increase, during a global pandemic.”
“We have seen a reduction in the numbers of families entering emergency accommodation due to the ban, it makes no sense ending the eviction ban and putting many more people at risk when we are still experiencing the effects of Covid. The worst thing the Minister could have done is to lift the ban on evictions which is currently keeping families in their homes. The ban must be extended until at least the end of 2021.”
Cllr Dermot ‘Daisy’ O’Brien can’t understand how this represents good decision making, “we are still in the middle of a global pandemic where people are extremely vulnerable across every aspect of their lives. I am failing to get my head around how the Govt can lift the ban on evictions in full knowledge that the most vulnerable in our communities will suffer more because of that decision. If public health is a national priority right now, how does the reactivation of evictions as an option really serve people? We know for certain that with an eviction scenario comes extra pressures on those who are suffering that traumatic experience but also on all of the supports and services that will attempt to respond and do their best. I just can’t figure out the rationale for this in the current Covid context.”
Cllr Grace McManus expressed her worry about the impact of this decision “In a context where it’s well reported supply of properties has plummeted over the last year because of construction delays, I can’t understand why the Minister would stand over adding another layer of demand by lifting this ban. I’m very worried about the impact of this decision on families in Wicklow, not only in terms of families being in precarious accommodation, but also the impact on mental health of pushing families into a market place in crisis, after a year of the stress of living through a pandemic. To whose benefit is this ban being lifted?”