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Housing crisis: Language campaigners to march on Welsh Government pavilion at National Eisteddfod

16 Jun 2022 3 minutes Read
Eisteddfod Genedlaethol Sir Conwy 2019

Language campaigners will march on the Welsh Government’s pavilion at the National Eisteddfod in Tregaron to call for further legislation to tackle the housing crisis.

Cymdeithas yr Iaith are calling for a Property Act which they say would ensure the right to a home locally.

The Welsh Government have already announced that from April of next year they will allow councils to set council tax premiums on second homes and long-term empty properties at 300%.

But according to Cymdeithas yr Iaith, a Property Act would provide a home for everyone and strengthen communities and the Welsh language in all parts of the country.

Osian Jones, on behalf of Cymdeithas yr Iaith, said: “Everyone is aware of the problem that young people can’t afford to buy or rent homes in their own communities.

“It is our intention to step up the campaign to insist that the Government introduces a Property Act to organize housing as social assets, not commercial assets, only in this way can we secure a future for our communities.

“The situation is particularly acute in tourist areas, but there is a housing problem across Wales.”

Strategy

The rally which will take place on Thursday 4 August will be part of the Nid yw Cymru ar Werth (Wales is not for sale) campaign and hundreds are expected to march from Cymdeithas yr Iaith’s stand on the Eisteddfod maes to the Welsh Government’s stand.

Cymdeithas made the announcement 50 days before the rally, and said that speakers, singers and rally arrangements will be announced daily until the day of the rally.

Cymdeithas said that the main speakers will be Walis Wyn George, a housing expert from Llanrug, Gwynedd, and former Welsh Language Commissioner, Meri Huws.

Walis is a former CEO of Cymdeithas Tai Gwynedd, and has been a supporter of Cymdeithas’ campaign since the 1980s.

He said: “The time for a Property Act has come; it is urgently needed and our Government must put it in place during this parliamentary term. I hope that people come from communities all over Wales to insist that the government takes action to secure a future for these communities.”

Meri grew up in Pembrokeshire, and now lives in Carmarthenshire where she chairs the Carmarthenshire Language Forum.

Also speaking will be Cai Phillips, a student who led the campaign at the Urdd Eisteddfod to collect the names of more than 200 young people who say they will be searching for a home in the coming years, on a call for the Government to create a housing strategy.


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