Ó Clochartaigh said:
“Empty and unfinished houses need to be made available, need to be finished and people need to be allowed to live in them.
“We have over 4000 people in Galway city alone on the housing list. We have a city council that’s sitting on land banks. We need that to be turned into houses so that people can live in them.
“We’re heading into a student accommodation crisis where the universities at the moment are coming to home owners asking them if they have rooms to rent in their houses because we don’t have enough accommodation available. We need more action in this area.
“The cost of rent has gone up 20% over the last year. Not only is that making it nearly impossible for those on middle incomes to try and find houses but anybody who is dependent on rent supplement as well is being forced out of the houses. That’s why ze’re seeing more people on the homeless lists here in Galway.
“NAMA have over 3000 properties available across Galway City and County. To date only 84 of them have been made available for people to live in. There are 600 more which could be made available very quickly and that needs to be done.