‘There Was No Concrete Plan’



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From top: The homeless volunteer group in Dublin, You’re Not Alone, distributing items on Tuesday night – the group looked after 263 people before running out of food; acting Environment Minister Alan Kelly at the Custom House this morning

Further to the forum on housing and homelessness in the Custom House this morning…

Acting Environment Minister Alan Kelly spoke to Conor Brophy on RTÉ’s News At One.

Niamh Randall, national spokesperson for the Simon Community, was also interviewed by RTÉ’s Conor Brophy.

Grab a tay.

Alan Kelly:  “What’s happening here is actually very useful today. We’ve had a number of presentations from the Housing Agency, from NAMA, from the CIF, from the Homeless Executive and from the people who are in charge of local authority funding and various other areas. You see in order to sort this issue you’ve got a whole load of levers across a whole load of various departments and organisations. And, also, on top of that you’ve got an intricate web of solutions that are required, you know, there’s a spectrum of issues across a whole range of areas here – whether it’s in finance, whether it’s in social services, whether it is in the timeline it takes to actually go and build housing, whether it’s in a whole load of areas, of planning and other areas. They are all inter-connected, there’s one thing I will leave this department, pushing out there. There is no silver bullet. All of these are interconnected and you need to get people into the room to ensure that they get into solution mode, get talking to one another in order to actually sort this out.”

Conor Brophy: “But these sound like learnings from your time as minister and learnings somebody else will have to take on when a new Government is formed. It doesn’t sound like there’s anything there that could be implemented right now or a solution that’s presenting itself in the interregnum.”

Kelly: “Well, I don’t accept that at all. In fact, you know, I was here for 20 months in this department and we got through a huge amount of legislation, a huge amount of changes whether it was in the area of rent, whether it’s in the fact there was €4billion for social housing, whether it’s in dealing with a whole range of other areas when it came to housing. We got through a whole range of 26 very significant actions which I’m not going to recount for you here, we don’t have time, but really what we’re positioning people here is that, I mean, I’m not going to be grandstanding while I’m in opposition,or whoever is going to be in this department later on. What I want to see is solutions. And if people aren’t talking at the level at which they’re talking at inside here, you will not find solutions because whoever is replacing me in this department, and Minister Paudie Coffey in the department will need these people to be talking at the level in which they’re talking. So I believe that, today, is about solutions…”


Niamh Randall: “I think there was probably a bit of a missed opportunity with the forum. It was very presentation heavy. So, at 12.15pm, we were still hearing presentations from a number of different stakeholders and that wasn’t an opportunity for the people who were present, attending the open forum, to take place. So I think that possibly was a bit of a missed opportunity. I think maybe and maybe there is an opportunity to pull people together, to have a facilitated discussion, getting the ideas from the floor and suggestions and ideas from the floor. And secondly, there wasn’t a concrete plan there – certainly while I was present anyway, in terms of what would happen next, so where this will go, particularly when we’re in this vacuum of having a government and in this vacuum of having, we’ve an acting minister. How does all this happen? How do we ensure there’s activity in the meantime? There didn’t seem to be a concrete plan there and I did ask that question from the floor and there wasn’t a clear answer in relation to that. So there was a little sense, I felt, of a lack of urgency around all of this. And I suppose the thing that we really see on the ground, in the Simon Community, is the impact that this is having on people every single day and this is absolutely urgent…”


Randall: “”Critically, one of the voices missing from the panel, I felt, was the Department of Social Protection. They did ask, some representative to speak from the audience, in relation to the issues on rent supplement but that is a key issue in terms of pushing people into homelessness and preventing people from leaving homelessness behind and the fact that that wasn’t represented on the panel really leads me to believe that the analysis may be flawed at some level.”

Listen back in full here

You’re Not Alone (Facebook)

Earlier: ‘I Was Blocked By The Constitution’


25 thoughts on “‘There Was No Concrete Plan’

  1. ollie

    In Alan Kelly’s world there’s 4 billion available for this issue.

    In the real world Kelly is either delusional or lying (My money’s on him being a liar)
    There’s no 4 billion, there’s no solution, there’s no appetite for a solution.
    There’s not even a contract in place for modular housing because the winning tenderer has withdrawn from the contract.
    There has been and will continue to be talking shops.

    This statement “there’s a spectrum of issues across a whole range of areas here – whether it’s in finance, whether it’s in social services” translates to ” No-one is responsible therefore it’s no-one can be held accountable.
    Meanwhile, Kelly picked up €1,333.33 in unvouched expenses for January. That’s 15 Dail days, €88 a day to travel from Walkinstown (assuming he was in every day, which he most likely wasn’t)

    1. Anne

      1,333 for 15 days… christ on a bike. And that’s only expenses.

      No wonder he was celebrating getting re-elected like he just knocked out his opponent in a boxing match.. the cha-ching was going off in his ears. Cha-ching, cha-ching.. cha-ching..

      power is a drug, fupping idiot.

    2. Sheik Yahbouti

      Ah, the gallant Sir Alan of Pork riding to the rescue of the poor and downtrodden. Purleeeze. I was astonished to hear that he would have done even more wonders if it weren’t for our pesky Constitution.

  2. Clampers Outside!

    As Peter McVerry said, there have been so many years of ‘quick fix’ solutions to housing set up that the whole thing is a mess.

    Alan Kelly here seems to think that adding more rather than simplifying is going to fix things. He’s a fool of a man if he thinks adding to the mess is going to help.
    So what if he ran through legislation, or “26 significant actions”…. do we know are they something that’ll work or complicate things… maybe just another plaster, or 26?

    The above piece tells me he still has no clue and thinks that more plasters will do the job. He comes across as a spoofer, an ill prepared spoofer lacking in the knowledge required to tackle a situation he himself was in charge of. Why wasn’t he on top of and aware of the info in the presewntations, nothing new has come out of them, nothing he shouldn’t have been on top of if he was doing the job correctly…..

    Fupp off Alan…. go snort some ‘Power’-ade or something, ya big spoofer!

    1. Tired old refrain

      What’s your point? do you have a solution set ready to go? care to share it with the group?

      1. mildred st. meadowlark

        No but Clampers isn’t an elected official, in charge of housing for 20 months or so.

      2. Clampers Outside!

        Yes. Yes I do.

        I’d heed Peter McVerry’s advice, and that of others, on the fact that there are far too many quick fix solutions slowing up the processes in getting more houses built. Additionally, there are issues around who is entitled, who is not, what benefits, how many persons per housing type, etc and I’d look at untangling that mess…. as Peter and others have advised repeatedly.

        Anyone claiming to be able to fix the problem without addressing those two things is just adding another plaster without taking stock of the bigger picture.
        Alan Kelly’s waffling above shows clearly that that is what he thinks the next person should do. He’s not offering anything, just blowing hot air after sitting through a few presentations – it’s the same thing with ‘let’s hold an inquiry / tribunal’ and then nothing is done… it’s just the same ol’ same ol’ with Alan.

        What’s your solution, and don’t give me your namesake, please.

        1. Tired old refrain

          My namesake!

          You’re a cheeky bugger aren’t you?

          My solution would be to stop electing right wing governments and to change the law

  3. dav

    the sooner land, hoarded away by property developer pond life, is taken into state ownership, the better think of it as a “Use it or Lose it law”. The state could either develop those lands or use it as collateral for a massive social housing scheme 50k to 60k units per anmum. That would put a rocket under the asses of those who can’t build a house ’cause they can’t cream enough profit of the people.

    1. Tired old refrain

      the usual ranting worthless brio from your byline I see

      of course we should have the state seize private property

      that works so well in china and russia

        1. dav

          neah, Tired old refrain is some property developer apologist, who believe that they and there kind are ireland’s answer to a “Renaissance Man”

        1. Tired old refrain

          The state socialised that debt because it literally was bankrupt and would not have been able to pay social welfare and pensions etc ongoing.
          You do realise that don’t you you complete idiot?

    2. DubLoony

      I agree – in Dublin 8 we have large amounts of derelict land that has been sitting fro 30+ years. Its not boom / bust scenario, its someone lost the deeds / will / CPO due to road widening / whatever.

    3. Anne

      I think the ‘Use it or Lose it’ idea is that rezoned land would have a license for a certain period of time.. so for instance, planning and building would need to be started within a certain timeframe, otherwise the land would revert to being agricultural land and it would therefore be worth a lot less… that wouldn’t require taking land from anyone, and it wouldn’t interfere with the constitution and Alan Kelly well knows this.

  4. 15 cents

    kellys tone on everything he says is aggressive, defensive and dismissive. literally everything he ever effin says. he’s a bad person.

  5. Odockatee

    There is one simple solution to all this in the long term in my opinion. A proper rental properties control authority that actually regulates. People would then have the possibility of long term leases, investing in rental properties as mid to long term homes as opposed to year-on-year arrangements. This would control the fluctuation in the market, allow people who want to buy the stability of a lease where they can budget to save and also make it viable for people who have no desire to own a home to make long term rental a viable thing.

    Unfortunately like everything else there are too many vested interests who want maximum return on investment and don’t see housing as anything other than an investment. As long as regulation is ignored in this area you can forget about any housing or homeless crisis being seriously remedied. Mmf

  6. Bottler

    Nothing will change until the Constitution which puts property rights before people’s rights is changed

Comments are closed.