Homeless applications reduced according to latest report

Kevin Stewart - SNP - Aberdeen Central May 2016. Pic - Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament
Kevin Stewart

The number of homelessness applications and the amount of people assessed as homeless in Scotland has reduced during 2015/16, according to a publication today by Scotland’s Chief Statistician.

The Homelessness and Housing Options Statistics released today have shown that homelessness applications in 2015/16 have reduced by around 4 per cent compared to the previous year.

The statistics have shown that there are still around 28,000 cases which are assessed as homeless or threatened with homelessness, this is a 5 per cent decrease on the numbers from last year.

However, households in temporary accommodation remained unchanged and the report showed an increase in the number of children living in temporary accommodation.

The Housing Options statistics in Scotland were also published today. These statistics are being published as experimental statistics in order to involve users and stakeholders in their development and as a means to build in quality at an early stage.

Kevin Stewart, minister for local government and housing, said: “We are doing everything we can to make sure everyone has access to a warm and safe place to stay, and I welcome the decrease in the number of homeless applications and households being assessed as homeless.

“It is, however, our aim to stop people becoming homeless in the first place which is much better for our people and our communities, and of course our homelessness services.

“While there are many reasons for families staying in temporary accommodation, I am disappointed in the increase in the number of children in temporary accommodation. Although the majority of temporary accommodation is good quality, well managed social housing which is of the exact same standard as permanent accommodation, I am keen to see these numbers decrease and people to have a settled home.

“I will therefore continue the work of my predecessor in this area, who wrote to all Local Authorities who were experiencing increases and outlined the government’s concerns.

“We must address the various reasons for families staying in temporary accommodation and I will continue to work together with local authorities and partners in the best interests of all households looking for permanent accommodation.”

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