Dáil to debate building standards following Grenfell blaze

19th June 2017

Green Party motion on Building Standards, Regulation and Homeowner Protection to be debated Wednesday


The Dáil will this week debate and vote on improved regulation of building standards and quality, the implementation of remedial scheme to assist homeowners to resolve serious structural and safety issues resulting from grossly defective building standards and also provide new legal rights and remedies to protect home buyers.

Speaking today, Green Party Deputy Leader and TD for Dublin Rathdown, Catherine Martin, said: “In the rush to build the new homes so urgently needed, it is essential that this time it is done right and that all homes are built to an acceptable and safe standard. We submitted this motion a number of weeks ago, but the tragic inferno at Grenfell Tower in London earlier last week has brought this issue to the fore. The overriding priority underpinning all construction must be the safety of residents. There is no doubt about it – under the current rules and regulations, we could easily have a blaze like Grenfell in Ireland. We have already seen examples inadequate fire safety in the likes of Priory Hall and Longboat Quay.

“There are tens of thousands of homes in this country affected by shoddy building work and failures in building control. We have seen this in a number of developments, where fire-proofing wasn’t completed properly, problems with water ingress, homes blighted by pyrite and by the risk of defective and sub-standard concrete blockwork, which may affect thousands of homes in Donegal and Mayo. We must do everything in our power to prevent this from happening to another generation of homeowners.”

The Green Party motion on Building Standards, Regulation, and Homeowner Protection has three central aims:

  1. Introduce a properly funded national building regulation office wherein a new independent Building Regulator will oversee national building control and regulate those involved in construction
  1. Stop systematic failures in building control happening again by ensuring that building standards are raised and that there is appropriate building control compliance in this country including fully resourcing the new building regulator office with an effective and robust enforcement agency.
  1. Improve legal remedies for homeowners who discover that there are serious latent defects in their homes, and introduce a consumer-friendly dispute resolution scheme for when this happens.