Shelter: homeless denied housing rights in Scotland

Shelter: homeless denied housing rights in Scotland





Figures released by the Scottish Executive show that homeless families across Scotland are being denied their legal right to a permanent home, according to Shelter.


According to the statistics, at the end of September 2004, 2,147 families with children were housed in temporary accommodation across Scotland, a 64 percent rise in the use of temporary accommodation to house homeless families with children across Scotland from 2002 to 2004. However, the majority of these families had a legal right to permanent housing under legislation passed in 2001.


Any family assessed as intentionally homeless has a right to temporary accommodation. However, any family assessed to be unintentionally homeless has a right to a permanent home. Between April and September 2004, only 266 families in Scotland were assessed as intentionally homeless, yet almost ten times this number of homeless families were in temporary housing in September of that year.


Rachel Cackett, Campaign Communications Manager at Shelter said: ‘The statistics show a crisis in our housing system. All children need a safe and secure home to grow up in. Without this their education, their health and their future prospects all suffer.


‘Local authorities are between a rock and a hard place, and the figures show they are unable to provide the permanent housing that is a right to families with children who are not intentionally homeless. Without more affordable housing in Scotland to meet need, it is clear that legal rights to a permanent home will just be lip service to homeless families with children. ‘


Earlier this month a survey by Shelter indicated public alarm in Britain at rising house prices, with people increasingly worried that future generations will be unable to afford to buy or rent a home.


Source: Scottish Housing News.