Almost 40 Children Made Homeless in Scotland Every Day, Says Shelter

July 31, 2018

Close to 40 children were made homeless in Scotland every day over the course of last year, according to a shocking new report on the subject.

The figures have been compiled by the homelessness charity Shelter Scotland and they show that 14,075 children were classed as being homeless during the year 2017/18.

As many as 6,615 children were recorded as living in temporary accommodation across all parts of the country on one particular day in March this year.

Shelter Scotland has described the situation as “damning” for Scotland as a society and has called for urgent action to be taken to tackle issues around homelessness.

 

Alison Watson, the deputy director of Shelter Scotland, says the situation as it stands and as demonstrated by the latest set of figures on Scotland’s homelessness problems should be viewed as an “emergency”.

“For the equivalent of a class and a half of schoolchildren to be made homeless everyday just isn’t right,” she said.

Ms Watson pointed out that homelessness can have long lasting effects on the mental health of young people, while also harming their physical wellbeing and their ability to do well in school.

Indeed, children affected by homelessness are estimated to be four times more likely to have mental health problems than other children, even after they’ve been properly housed for more than a year.

Families with children can be more difficult to house and in Scotland during the year 2017/18, children spent an average of 25 per cent longer in temporary accommodation than other homeless people, according to Shelter’s latest figures.

“The fact families with children have to endure the limbo of temporary accommodation longer than other homeless households just compounds their misery,” said Ms Watson. “This has got to stop. We must find ways of supplying enough permanent accommodation for homeless families and individuals.”

“At the heart of the problem is the acute shortage of housing,” Ms Watson continued. “We need to build many more truly affordable homes of the right type in places where people want to live in order to fix our housing emergency.”

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John Baird

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