Words: Eva O’Beirne
There are currently 137,000 vacant homes in Ireland.
The Oireachtas Committee for Housing will be recommending a tax for vacant homes under a new report.
The report also recommends the establishment of a new division in the Department of Housing which would be dedicated to tackling vacancies. According to some agencies, there are as many as 30,000 empty homes in Dublin alone.
The news comes as Oxfam reports that the pandemic has created a new billionaire every 30 hours and now one million people could fall into extreme poverty at the same pace.
The wealth of Ireland’s nine billionaires has increased by 15.55 billion euro since the start of the pandemic, a 55 per cent increase bringing it to 51 billion euro, Oxfam said. Latest figures show that 691,587 people in Ireland are experiencing deprivation, of which 204,710 are children.
Billionaires’ wealth rose more in the first 24 months of Covid-19 than in 23 years combined, according to the report Profiting from Pain.
Oxfam said it expects 263 million people to sink into extreme poverty this year, at a rate of one million every 33 hours, as soaring inflation has added a cost-of-living crisis on top of Covid. By comparison, 573 people became billionaires during the pandemic, or one every 30 hours.
Elsewhere on District: Plans to abolish direct provision have been delayed