SFHA hustings to take place in Edinburgh

SFHA hustings to take place in Edinburgh

The Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) is hosting a hustings event tonight in the Edinburgh South constituency, where candidates will go head-to-head with housing perspectives on additional powers for Scotland.

The debate will be chaired by The Scotsman’s former political editor Hamish Macdonell and the panel is set to feature representatives from parties standing in the constituency.

Scottish Housing News will live-tweet the hustings from our Twitter account.

Mary Taylor, chief executive of the SFHA, said: “We are keen to bring together a diverse audience for the event to help us question the politicians. The devolution of further powers to Scotland will have a significant impact on the housing system, on landlords and tenants, on people who receive welfare and on businesses and organisations that provide services.

“The main parties have committed to passing a bill on new powers for Scotland after the election, but they are making different promises about the detail of how they will deliver these powers. This hustings will provide an important opportunity to question the candidates on the key areas of concern for the housing sector – welfare reform, energy and fuel poverty, fiscal powers and intergovernmental working – and on issues specific to the local area of each event.

“Affordable housing is a key issue in Edinburgh; everyone should have a decent, affordable, warm home in a thriving, safe community. To achieve this, we need any new powers to contribute to a well functioning housing system that can make a significant and effective contribution to meeting housing needs and tackling poverty, inequality and deprivation across Scotland. I encourage anyone with an interest in housing issues to join us for the hustings.”

Scottish Socialist Party spokesman Colin Fox, who is standing in Edinburgh South, is to participate in the hustings a day after his party launched a manifesto calling for 100,000 new homes for social rent in Scotland over the course of the next parliament.

Scottish Housing News also spoke to Phyl Meyer, Scottish Green candidate in Edinburgh South, who said: “The Scottish Greens have made housing one of our priority issues in this election because it is one of the areas where the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of people could be done, in terms of health, happiness, equality and environmental sustainability.

“In government we would embark on the world’s most ambitious programme of improvements in home energy efficiency to slash energy bills and emissions while creating thousands of jobs in sustainable industries and ending the fuel poverty crisis. We would invest in social housing across the UK, make standard tenancies more secure and introduce rent controls where appropriate to put the brakes on spiralling costs, led in large part by profit-driven investment in buy-to-let.”

He said he would also “like to see more support for initiatives like the Edinburgh Student Housing Co-operative”.

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