Housing challenge for Ritchie…


SIR John Semple’s Review into Affordable Housing was launched today, and Social Development Minister David Hanson used the opportunity to throw down the gauntlet to his successor: “I hope that, when a local Minister assumes responsibility for these issues, this valuable work will help inform the development of policy. The challenge for the new Northern Ireland Executive will be to bring in changes that will extend housing choice for everyone.” Coincidentally, his successor was nominated yesterday as the SDLP’s Margaret Ritchie. The report includes some radical proposals that mean Ritchie will require co-operation from other Ministers – will she get it? Along with the Housing Market: Review and Perspectives 2007-2010, published earlier this week, stressing the problems of affordability, Ritchie has her work cut out.