Pringle supports call for minister to come to Donegal to meet on mica redress issues

Independent TD for Donegal, Thomas Pringle, has supported the call of the Mica Action Group and Donegal county councillors for the Housing Minister to come to Donegal to discuss outstanding issues in the mica redress scheme.

Addressing the Dáil, Deputy Pringle said, “I hosted the Mica Action Group who, along with county councillors, spoke to Oireachtas members about the revised Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme, which has still not been delivered, despite declarations of urgency from Minister O’Brien, and it will probably be later on this year before we see anything happen in relation to that.

“Despite misleading statements made by the government, the revised scheme does not deliver 100 per cent redress due to caps and exclusions. It was agreed at the meeting that the Minister needs to come to Donegal to discuss these issues and Donegal County Council need to be proactive in how they’re going to deal with affected homeowners.


“There is also a complete lack of support in project management and infrastructure, which will leave many homeowners without a way forward. This is completely unacceptable and unfair to homeowners who have been fighting for years to receive compensation for homes that were built, unknowingly to them, with defective blocks due to the government’s light-touch regulation which still continues to this day,” he said.

The deputy raised the issue during his remarks in support of the Sinn Féin motion re Housing and Evictions.

Deputy Pringle cited a recent study by the Economic and Social Research Institute, which found that the longer children are exposed to inadequate housing from birth to the age of nine, the more harm they experience.

According to the study, children living in inadequate housing have worse health and developmental outcomes than their peers, he said.

Deputy Pringle said: “The report detailed how respiratory problems are more common for nine-year olds who spent more time living in poor housing conditions, such as damp properties, as well as homes which are not adequately heated.

“This is particularly concerning when you consider the number of children forced to live in such conditions because they live in defective concrete homes across Donegal, Mayo, Clare, Limerick and many other counties as well.

“Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael housing policy has failed, and continues to fail to protect these children. It has exposed them to defective homes which are not only incredibly dangerous, but which affect their health, as well as their social and emotional well-being.”


The deputy said: “What’s even more frustrating is the shocking inequality between this scheme and the scheme for victims of ‘Celtic Tiger’ defective apartments. All victims of defective homes deserve to be treated equally and funded fully for the stress and pain they have endured at the hands of bad policy and regulation.

“I strongly believe that we need to bring a well-being focus to all future policy in this country and particularly to all future plans to tackle the housing crisis,” he said.

Speaking later, Deputy Pringle said Donegal County Council needs to put a plan to the Department for temporary housing for mica-affected households, rather than waiting for the Department to take the lead.

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