We need a long term strategy around homelessness

ken_macintoshKen Macintosh MSP, Scottish Labour’s Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Community, says we need a long term strategy detailing how government, housing associations and the third sector can tackle homelessness.

 

Shelter Scotland has estimated that there are 5,000 children homeless this Christmas. That’s a 15% increase on last year.

Homelessness can have a devastating impact on people’s lives, on their health, their sense of worth and on their children’s welfare and wellbeing. At Christmas time, there is something particularly upsetting about not having a place to call home, yet this is the reality for thousands of Scots.

This year the number of children who will spend Christmas Day homeless has increased. This problem is getting worse, not better.

The bare minimum every Scot deserves from their government is a home and a fair chance. If we are serious about building a fairer Scotland then we have to start by building more homes.

But we can do more right now to help those in pressing need. The last Labour-led Scottish Government set a bold target to reduce homelessness in 2003 but nearly thirteen years on the current SNP Government appears to have lost that that sense of purpose.

Despite the Scottish Parliament passing world leading legislation to tackle the problem, progress in reducing the numbers of homeless households had stalled. There is still no overarching strategy from the SNP Government detailing how central government, local authorities, housing associations and the third sector could work together to reduce homelessness in Scotland. The most recent figures published by the SNP Government show that the number of homeless households in Scotland remains around 54,000.

We need a long term strategy around homelessness. With a majority in parliament and more powers than ever before, the SNP Government must give that commitment and to go into 2016 showing the sort of determination that is required.

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7 thoughts on “We need a long term strategy around homelessness

  1. Why didn’t we need a long term strategy a long time ago when Labour were in power across the whole of the UK?
    Oh that’s right we did. It was ensuring Scotland always remained subjected to Tory rule from Westminster.

    1. “We need a long term strategy around homelessness. With a majority in parliament and more powers than ever before, the SNP Government must give that commitment and to go into 2016 showing the sort of determination that is required.”

      Mike you are bang on the money to highlight that the Scottish Labour section when it was in power did not have have a strategy never mind a long term strategy what we now have here with it coming up to the Scottish elections is electioneering and what you are getting is roll out of desperate politicans trying to as in Ken’s case put themselves in the shop window unfortunately it looks as if it’s too late and the shop is holding a closing down sale in May. Maybe the shop that is the Scottish Labour section may open up another shop under new management and a new company and name it the Scottish Independent Labour Party and have a fresh start.

  2. “This year the number of children who will spend Christmas Day homeless has increased. This problem is getting worse, not better.”

    Please tell me you’re not planning to deny that this is a direct result of Westminster targeted austerity? A policy Labour shares with their Tory comrades in blue and would have implemented had they won outright victory in the GE.

  3. If every pound that was spent in Glasgow’s housing stock over the last century had been invested wisely, Glaswegians would all be living in plush, high quality houses.
    That is part of the problem. Much of the money went to badly designed high rise ( some of the most sought after property in the world are high rise apartments ), or sub standard housing. Quality control in Glasgow has been lamentable, and much of the money has gone down the drain.
    Or into the pockets of crooks.
    No more short termism, or giving contracts to relatives, dodgy builders or Party insiders.

  4. Ken,

    You’re one of Labour’s good guys. It is to the detriment of Labour and Scotland that Dugdale got in before you.

    Nonetheless this is an SNP BAD piece. You are a good man who told some abysmal lies in the local papers in the lead up to the referendum (e.g english constituents forced to leave). And you tried to interject to support Kelly’s idiocy in the Scottish Parliament recently. And of course you are part of the BBC/Labour cronyism that has led to your selection.

    Why don’t you do what is natural and right – accept your mistakes, apologise, join the SNP, stop your friends ‘unemployingly’ you, and get reelected in May.

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