Lack of housing in Tipperary now 'an emergency', says Cllr Seamie Morris

Anger over dire lack of housing

A dire lack of accommodation in County Tipperary has resulted in “an emergency” with increasing numbers facing the threat of homelessness, Independent Nenagh Cllr Seamie Morris has stated.

He was speaking at last Monday’s meeting of Tipperary County Council where he presented a motion declaring that lack of housing was an emergency nationwide.

His motion, asking the Minister for Housing  “to declare housing to be an emergency” is now to be forwarded to the Minister, Darragh O’ Brien.

The motion, adopted by the council, is calling on the State to bring in emergency legislation similar to that used to house Ukrainian refugees in Ireland.

Cllr Morris said that despite the best efforts of staff in the council’s housing department, the situation regarding accommodation in the county is “desperate”.

The crisis was being endured by those seeking both social housing and private accommodation.

Cllr Morris said the process of delivering new housing was too slow.

He said alternative ways of dealing with the large numbers of people in need of accommodation must be looked at.


“We need to look at modular housing schemes,” he said, adding that easing restrictions on people building houses in rural areas on their family’s lands also needed to be examined.

Cllr Morris said the lack of housing in Tipperary was the biggest issue he was facing when meeting voters when canvassing in the run up to the local elections.

He said he was meeting many renters who were in desperation after landlords had issued them with notices to quit.

Some 107 notices to quit had been issued in Tipperary in the first quarter of the year alone, leaving those living in such properties with nowhere to go.

Many young couples had no option but to move back home to their parents.

Many parents had space in their gardens where their adult children could put up a modular home to get them over the current crisis. However, they faced too many restrictions with this option due to planning laws.

What was driving people mad was that the rules governing the provision of housing for applicants seeking international protection who entered the country were a lot less restrictive than it was for local people.

Cllr Morris said the rules and regulations in regard to the use of modular housing had to be eased. Councils in Kerry and Laois were already coming up with solutions in this regard and Tipperary had to do likewise.

Several councillors spoke in support of Cllr Morris, including Cllr Mairín McGrath who said people were angry that it seemed easier for international protection applicants to acquire modular accommodation than locals.

“Anger is building in the area and we need an emergency response,” said Cllr McGrath.

Cllr Richie Molly agreed that there was “a lot of distress out there” due to the lack of housing.

Cllr Fiona Bonfield said lack of housing was one of the main issues raised by people when she is out canvassing. “I fully support Cllr Morris in calling this an emergency.”