Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Councillor Tony Hassan has presented Minister Mervyn Storey with a letter calling on him to move immediately to review the housing points system.And to grant the many housing applicants, who are deemed homeless and as a result have sourced their own private rented accommodation the extra 20 points that other housing Executive applicants get when given temporary accommodation.
The Minister was in Derry and I felt it was important to ask him to have an immediate look at the housing points system which I believe needs an immediate overhaul”Tony Hassan said
“Families are having their chances of getting a new home curtailed by the Housing Executives current policy of not awarding the additional 20 points .In many cases this is because applicants who have been assessed as homeless by NIHE are not in a position to wait for temporary accommodation and source their own private accommodation only to be penalized by NIHE.I believe this is wrong and should be addressed.
Sinn Féin has raised this issue many times over the last few years in the hope that this oversight would be rectified. And for a fairer system of the allocation of points for all those who are living in private rented accommodation.
We were told at the time that the Housing Executive and the Minister were looking at this under the Common Selection Scheme and it was hoped that this issue would be resolved early in 2011, it is now 2015 and still no resolution to the problem.
I am now calling on the Minister Mervyn Storey, Housing Executive and the Department of Social Development to make every effort possible to address this issue, and to give equality to all Housing Executive applicants.