Regulator publishes findings on improvements in Dumfries and Galloway homelessness services

The Scottish Housing Regulator has today published a report on the findings of its inquiry into Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Housing Options and Homeless Service.

The regulator found that the council has significantly improved the service and is working more effectively with its Registered Social Landlord partners. Together they have significantly increased the number of lets to people who are homeless and reduced the time people spend in temporary accommodation waiting for a home.

In 2016 the council commissioned a large scale review of the service after the regulator identified significant weaknesses which the council was slow to address.

The council accepted the review findings and has made good progress in implementing an improvement plan.

Kathleen McInulty, assistant director at the regulator, said: “The Council is now delivering improved outcomes for people who are homeless, and whose homelessness can be prevented, as a result of the significant changes it has made since 2016. It acknowledges that further improvement is required in ensuring access to homelessness applications and in the provision of temporary accommodation.

“We expect the Council to review and update its plans for further improvement to take account of our recommendations.”

Councillor Andy Ferguson, chair of DGC’s communities committee, added: “Dumfries and Galloway Council made a clear commitment in 2016 to address improvements required in the Homeless and Housing Options Service – a key Council priority is to protect our most vulnerable. The Scottish Housing Regulator’s findings from their inquiry into this service is very welcome and demonstrates the positive progress made.”

Councillor John Martin, vice chair of communities committee, said: “This is very much as a result of the hard work and commitment of our staff and in conjunction with key partners. While improvement has been evidenced every effort will be made to continue to take the service forward both strategically and operationally.”

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