Privatising the anomaly - public housing in Northern Ireland


  • Stewart Smyth


For over four decades the delivery of public housing in Northern Ireland had been little changed, with one unified public housing provider across the six counties. Created in 1971 as a direct outcome of the civil rights movement's agitation over housing, the Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE) has been able to improve public housing conditions from among the worst in Europe, at the time of its creation, to now being considered a role model. This legacy is currently under attack in a pincer movement of welfare reforms and threatened privatisation.