The Northern Ireland Assembly election is due to take place on Thursday May 5. In the run-up to the election, political parties putting forward candidates will be publishing their manifestos.
A manifesto is a document which sets out what policies a political party will seek to implement if their candidates are elected. We at Homeless Connect, working with our members, developed a manifesto which sets out ten policies we believe would make a real difference in preventing and reducing homelessness here.
As each party publishes their manifesto, we will be profiling their commitments in the areas our manifesto covers. On 21 April, the Green Party NI launched their election manifesto. Some sections of note include the following:
“Introduce a legal duty to co-operate that requires government departments and bodies to work together on cross-departmental issues and that reduces silos.”
“Housing is a human right. Everybody has the right to a good quality home, interdependent with green spaces, local amenities and public transport. The housing crisis continues to worsen.
Waiting lists for social housing get longer while supply of housing dwindles. Housing has become unaffordable – to buy and to rent – for large parts of the population. The Five Party Executive has wasted too many opportunities to ensure decent living conditions. It’s time for an urgent programme of house building.
It’s time for assistance for private renters, including rent caps and proper standards for rental properties. It’s time to address the housing crisis.
The Green Party NI will:
- Introduce rent controls and longer tenancies, and strengthen renters’ rights.
- Deliver at least 2,500 energy efficient social housing units per year to meet lifelong living needs.
- Support the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to borrow the necessary funds to build the social housing that we need.
- Develop measures to bring empty and vacant housing back into use.
- Create a landlord registration scheme that requires private landlords to maintain adequate standards in rental properties under the supervision of local authorities.
- Increase the Supporting People budget, and support the SmartMove NI model for private rentals.”