Shelter Report Highlights Scotland’s Worsening Housing Crisis
August 21, 2017
A new report from the homelessness charity Shelter has outlined the extent to which Scotland is experiencing a housing crisis and just how many people across the country are struggling to keep a roof over their heads.
According to the charity, its Scotland-based advisers were busier than ever during the 12 months between April 2016 and March 2017, with roughly 21,000 Scots reaching out for support in relation to housing problems during that period.
Of the people contacting Shelter Scotland, 46 per cent were private renters despite the fact that only 14 per cent of people in Scotland currently rent their homes.
Financial problems were apparently at the root of the issues faced by 44 per cent of the people who contacted the charity for help during 2016-17.
More than a thousand people contacted Shelter Scotland having already become homeless, while 29 per cent of the Scots the organisation helped last year were looking to find a new home that was more affordable.
The charity’s latest ‘Impact Report’ on the subject of housing problems in Scotland suggests that younger generations are “bearing the brunt” of the unfolding crisis.
Almost half (46 per cent) of the people helped by Shelter Scotland during 2016-17 were reportedly aged between 16 and 34.
“Last year we were busier than ever helping people with bad housing and homelessness,” said Alison Watson, deputy director of Shelter Scotland.
“This report shows the disproportionate impact of Scotland’s housing crisis on young people and private renters who are both over-represented in the number of people we helped.
“The terrible shortage of truly affordable homes, harsh welfare reforms, stagnant wages and the high cost of keeping a roof over their head are the main reasons driving people to ask for help.”
According to Shelter’s statistics, someone in Scotland becomes homeless every 19 minutes and an unknown number of financially stricken Scots are currently “sofa surfing” with friends or family.
“Until there’s a decent, safe and secure home for everyone, we’ll be here to do whatever we can to help everyone in Scotland facing bad housing and homelessness,” Ms Watson said.
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