Council blames homelessness legislation for temporary accommodation growth

Norman Hampshire
Norman Hampshire

A proposal to increase the number of properties used to provide temporary accommodation has been approved by East Lothian Council.

Temporary accommodation is used by the local authority to house homeless people for a period before a more permanent solution can be found but recent demands have outstripped current supply.

Cabinet member for housing, Cllr Norman Hampshire, said: “Recent changes in homelessness legislation has led to a growth in demand for temporary accommodation particularly from single people. Because of the relatively small proportion of one bedroomed houses in East Lothian’s housing stock the council has been adversely affected by this change.

“The council has temporary accommodation available from a variety of sources including its own housing stock, leased from other Registered Social Landlords and private sector lets. We have recently increased options by buying 26 units on the open market and with other further investments plans we aim to increase available temporary accommodation.”

The report approved by Cabinet this week is the second part of a 3-stage approach to deliver the council’s statutory homeless responsibilities which will aim to reduce time spent in temporary accommodation and reduce the council’s reliance on the use of B&B accommodation.

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