Plaid Cymru leader pledges to build 50,000 houses and give care workers a pay rise

Plaid Cymru’s leader will commit his party to using lessons learned during the coronavirus pandemic to try to end child poverty and homelessness in Wales.

Adam Price is expected to make the pledge during his speech to the party’s conference which is taking place virtually because of the pandemic. 

It'll mark the beginning of seven months of campaigning for next May's Senedd election.

He’ll say that if Plaid Cymru were to lead the Welsh Government after May’s election, it will build 50,000 council or housing association homes over the next five years and guarantee a job for every young person. 

“Managing child poverty, homelessness and pollution simply won’t do. We have to eradicate them in the same way we are trying to eliminate this virus. This isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s the hard-headed, logical, and more cost-effective one too.  Every pound invested in homelessness returns triple. Ending child poverty is the best investment in our collective future that we could ever make. Why manage a problem when we can solve it?

“Many of us are inspired by the language of build back better. But let’s lay the foundations of permanent change. Let’s Change Wales for Good.”

The speech will be clearly aimed at marking the start of Plaid Cymru's election campaign.

Adam Price has promised universal free childcare for every family and for every child from the age of one. Credit: PA Images

Recent polling has shown healthy levels of support but far short of the levels needed to propel Adam Price into the office of First Minister without the support of at least one other party.

The latest ITV Wales Welsh Political Barometer suggested that Plaid would be on course to win 15 Senedd seats, coming third behind Labour and the Conservatives.

Nevertheless, Adam Price will use his speech to make a series of commitments:

“Universal free childcare for every family and for every child from age one on. A Welsh Child Payment for every child in a family who needs it. A guaranteed job for every young person that needs one, working on a green recovery, caring for our children, for our elderly, for our planet.

“And hundreds of pounds off the bill for the average family by reforming the unfair Council Tax – as a first step to replacing it with something fairer altogether.

 “We’ll build 10,000 homes a year. Public homes on public land. Genuinely affordable, high-quality and to the highest environmental standards - 50,000 during our first five-year term - 30,000 social homes, 15,000 affordable purchase homes and 5,000 affordable rental homes."