PBP calls for emergency powers to seize private property

A People Before Profit TD has called on the government to use emergency powers to forcibly seize private property to house Ukrainian refugees.

The comments were made yesterday in the Dáil by Richard Boyd Barrett TD during a discussion on the rapidly depleting housing options for Ireland’s Ukrainian arrivals.

“I want to discuss the practical issue of how we do what we have to do,” he said. 

“Namely, both accommodate Ukrainian refugees and address the housing crisis, which is very severe at present.”

Boyd-Barrett said that there was a unique “opportunity” because of “Putin’s bloody invasion.”

“The fact that there is a war gives the Minister extra powers, and I specifically refer to the Emergency Powers Act 1939, which gives him the power to do extraordinary and unprecedented things,” he said.

“Critically, this includes the power in section 2(2)(g) to “authorise and provide for the acquisition, taking possession, control or user (either by agreement or compulsorily) by… the State of any land or other property whatsoever” in the context of war.”

He added: “We should have used those powers before to get hold of vacant and empty buildings but whatever about that debate, I am appealing to the Minister to now use that power because he is justified in doing so.”

People Before Profit, which attends an annual Marxism conference, has repeatedly called for the removal of private property rights as a solution to housing.


Under PBP’s housing policy, private properties that they believe are “underused” will ultimately be “taken into public ownership” – i.e. seized.

In June of 2021, Boyd-Barrett and self-described “Communist” TD Paul Murphy called for the state to “override private property rights” as a means of dealing with the housing crisis.


“Marxist” TDs say the State must “override private property rights” to fix housing

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