Staff protest against NIHE abolition

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HOUSING Executive staff in Larne joined a Province-wide lunchtime protest on Tuesday, January 15 against the proposed abolition of NIHE.

Public service union NIPSA organised the series of protests after Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland announced draft proposals to transfer responsibility for social housing to the private sector.

Alison Millar, NIPSA deputy general secretary, said members are angry at the announcement. She added: “NIPSA intends to fight this decision to ensure both our members, tenants and prospective tenants know the whole truth.

“It is not true that there is no alternative. The NIHE could be allowed to borrow money, as they did during the 70s and 80s to improve existing stock and new, much-needed social housing.

“It is widely accepted that NIHE members delivered an excellent service over the past 40-plus years without fear or favour in what were on many occasions very difficult conditions during the Troubles. As many political and community representatives have stated, the NIHE is one of the few success stories throughout our troubled past.”