Executive promises every homeless person a home within 10 years

Every homeless person will be entitled to a home by the year
2012 under new plans drawn up by the Scottish executive

Social justice minister Iain Gray said that the Scottish
executive fully endorsed all the recommendations of the final
report of a homelessness taskforce. These include changes to the
current legislation, an end to the use of bed and breakfast
accommodation for families and new rent deposit/guarantee schemes
throughout Scotland.

The executive is to allocate an additional £11 million over
the next two years to help meet the report’s aims.

The taskforce, which was formed by the executive in 1999,
represented housing campaign groups, local authorities and housing

Gray told a Shelter Scotland seminar: “Homelessness in all its
forms is an affront to social justice. The Scottish executive
believes everyone in Scotland should have a decent, secure home,
and this report gives us a blueprint for preventing and tackling
homelessness over the next 10 years.”

The report has 59 recommendations including changes to
homelessness legislation which will ensure that all homeless people
are entitled to permanent accommodation by 2012 (unless this right
is suspended for a specific reason), and that homeless people can
apply to any local authority in Scotland.

All local authorities will be obliged to provide access to a
rent deposit or guarantee scheme by 2004. A national furnished
tenancy network will also be established with the aim of creating
5,000 additional furnished tenancies. Use of B&B accommodation
for homeless families cease.

Robert Aldridge, director of The Scottish Council for Single
Homeless and also a member of the taskforce, said: “The report is
as much about changing attitudes and practices as it is about
changing the law. But it also recognises that to tackle
homelessness effectively we need an improved supply of affordable,
good quality housing in places where people want to live. It will
need resources and we welcome the fact that the Scottish Executive
has recognised this.”

A multi agency monitoring group is to be created to ensure the
progress of the plans. www.scotland.gov.uk







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