Housing Benefit (Welfare Supplementary Payment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2017

Part of Executive Committee Business – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 12:45 pm on 16th January 2017.

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Photo of Christopher Stalford Christopher Stalford DUP 12:45 pm, 16th January 2017

I absolutely agree with that: it is essential that we build more social houses. That is why I welcome the fact that, in the draft Programme for Government, there was a commitment to build more social houses than we have ever built. Of course, we will not have a Government, so whether that target will be achieved is up in the air, and whether a direct rule regime of people from the Home Counties and the south-east of England will be prepared to see that through and delivered is up in the air. I absolutely agree with the Member about the need to build more social homes.

I welcome the fact that the Minister has brought the measures forward, and I hope that all parties will support them. It is essential that we use devolution to protect the people of Northern Ireland and the most vulnerable in our society. Those who have decided that they wish to cast devolution aside are leaving the most vulnerable in our society at the mercy of people who do not care about them.