Graeme Brown, director of Shelter Scotland, the housing and homelessness charity, says:
“This paper is meant to set out how the Scottish Government is going to meet the housing challenges of the next decade. While there are some very positive elements, it falls short of providing tangible detail on some key issues.
“We very much welcome the funding suggestions on empty homes, the reform of Right to Buy and streamlining regulation of private renting. We also welcome commitments to security of tenure for tenants and increasing people’s awareness of their housing options.
“The challenges that remain unresolved in this paper include the need for greater detail on supporting homeless people to prevent homelessness and on improving conditions for homeless families in temporary housing. The proposal to introduce a second-class of ‘probationary’ tenancy merely diminishes tenants’ rights and should be reconsidered while tinkering with allocations policy will create unnecessary local tension.
“What everybody in Scotland who is homeless or on a housing waiting list still needs to hear from the Scottish Government and from all political parties in the run up to the Holyrood elections is real detail on how much money is going to be invested in affordable housing, how many new homes are going to be built and how they are going to prevent people becoming homeless in the first place.
“The Scottish Government – whoever is in power – needs to commit to building more homes, protecting the homes we have and refurbishing existing stock. This is the only way of tacking Scotland’s chronic shortage of affordable housing.”
Notes to Editors:
1. Shelter Scotland, the housing and homelessness charity. Shelter Scotland believes that everyone should have a home. We help people find and keep a home. We campaign for decent housing for all.
2. Spokespeople are available for interview, telephone the media office on 0844 515 2442. An ISDN line number is available for broadcast interviews.
3. For more information about Shelter Scotland visit www.shelter.org.uk
4. Follow Shelter Scotland on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/shelterinscotland
Twitter – http://twitter.com/shelterscotland
Contact: Neil Baldwin
Phone: 0844 515 2442