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04 Jul 2022

100% redress call from Jeremy Corbyn

'Regulation is there for a purpose and it should be enforced' - Jeremy Corbyn

Former British Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn has voiced unequivocal support for homeowners affected by deleterious materials, sulphide minerals, mica and pyrite.

Mr Corbyn was speaking at a press conference in Derry's Ráth Mór Centre, in Creggan, as part of the weekend's Bloody Sunday 50th anniversary events.

When asked by Inish Live about deleterious materials, sulphide minerals, mica and pyrite, Mr Corbyn said the situation was “obviously devastating for the families concerned”.

He said: “They have lost their homes, lost the ability to sell them, have lost a great deal of money and in many cases have had to move out.

“We had a solidarity event in my constituency and my concern was that, as far as the North of Ireland was concerned, and there must be homes there [affected], I would call upon the government in Northern Ireland to make sure any redress that is done in the Republic should be and must be, should be the equivalent in the North as well.

“Using dodgy building materials is obviously dangerous, dangerous in the construction and it causes devastation in people's lives. I must say, until the event was organised in my constituency, I was completely unaware of the scale of this.

“During that discussion, it was pretty obvious to me that somebody, somewhere along the line, signed off this building material knowing it to be inadequate.

“It has happened in other buildings before, with the use of High Alumina Cement (HAC), which turned out to have a very short longevity, which brings about danger in buildings. I would have thought the lessons of dangerous buildings like Grenfell as well as this have got to be learned.”

Mr Corbyn blamed deregulation for the situation.

He said: “When you deregulate, when you cut back on health and safety inspections, when you cut back on building control, when you cut back on planning inspections, this is what you end up with. Regulation is there for a purpose and it should be enforced.

“I would call for 100% redress for people in the Republic of Ireland.

“There has to be 100% redress because the people that have moved into those homes or bought those homes that have got these dangerous materials, they obviously did not know about it.

“As a parallel, I have got constituents who have bought leased flats, which turn out to have dangerous cladding upon them. They didn't know it at the time.

“Obviously, had they had known it, they would not have bought the place.
“They are now in the position where they can't move, can't sell, can't remortgage, can't do anything because of these dodgy materials.

“I just think they deserve justice as well and that is also the case in mica.”

Mr Corbyn's comments in Derry followed similar ones he made in October 2021 at the solidarity event in his Islington North constituency in Greater London.

He also urged the British and Irish Governments and the Assembly in the North to formulate a redress option for families in the North and Britain with holiday homes in Donegal, Mayo and other affected counties,

Holiday home owners are currently excluded from the current Defective Concrete Blocks Grant Scheme and the proposed 'enhanced' scheme announced by Housing Minister, Darragh O'Brien, on November 30, 2021.

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