Media Release: No room for complacency as homelessness goes down

LEADING housing charity, Shelter Scotland, says statistics released today by the Scottish Government showing a 13 per cent reduction in homelessness applications in 2012/13 are encouraging, but warns against complacency as the proportion of homeless applications due to mortgage repossessions and the overall number of people in temporary accommodation go up.

Says a spokesperson: “The charity says the figures only show formal homelessness applications to local authorities – which have reduced as a result of housing options prevention work.

“However, they called for continued action to support home-owners applying as homeless and for a renewed effort to address an overall increase in the number of people staying in temporary accommodation. (1)

“Shelter Scotland also says the Scottish Government is right to warn on the worrying numbers of people being found intentionally homeless which is at a ten-year high (2).

“The charity says that against a background of austerity and welfare reform, it is concerned that some people are slipping through the housing safety net and not getting the help they need.”

Graeme Brown, director of Shelter Scotland, says:

“A 13 per cent reduction in people going through the nightmare of homelessness is good news and we congratulate local authorities for their continued prevention work in this area.

“However, there is no room for complacency. As the number of homeowners making homelessness applications due to defaulting on their mortgages rises, it is more important than ever that they can access advice and support.”

Graeme Brown added:

“The statistics also show an overall increase in households in temporary accommodation. This is a major bottleneck caused by a lack of good quality, affordable housing.

“In Scotland, we need to maintain and protect the housing safety net. The Scottish Government needs to build 10,000 social homes a year if we are to end Scotland’s housing crisis for good.”


Notes to Editors:

1.    There were a total 11,159 households in temporary accommodation, this is a four per cent rise compared with one year earlier.
2.    Those found intentionally homeless at ten-year high http://www.scotland.gov.uk/stats/bulletins/00956
3.    Shelter Scotland helps over half a million people a year struggling with bad housing or homelessness – and we campaign to prevent it in the first place. We’re here so no-one has to fight bad housing or homelessness on their own. For advice and support visit www.shelterscotland.org or call 0808 800 4444.
4.    Spokespeople are available for interview – call the media office on 0844 515 2442. An ISDN line is available for broadcast interviews.
5.    Follow Shelter Scotland on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/shelterscotland Twitter – http://twitter.com/shelterscotland

Shelter Scotland believes everyone should have a home. We help people find and keep a home. We campaign for decent housing for all.

MEDIA RELEASE posted by Shelter Scotland. You too can post media releases (aka press releases) on allmediascotland.com. For more information, email here.

Contact: Shelter Scotland

Email: mediascotland@shelter.org.uk
Website: http://www.shelterscotland.org