19 Jul 2023

CIH Scotland welcomes renewed focus on tackling homelessness

First Minister Humza Yousaf MSP has responded to the Temporary Accommodation Task and Finish Group’s final report and recommendations, making an announcement on a visit to one of Fife Council’s supported accommodation facilities today (19 July).  

Responding to the report the First Minister has committed to a number of actions to reduce the use of temporary accommodation including:  

  • £60 million funding from the 2023/24 Affordable Housing Supply Programme to support a national acquisition plan to rapidly increase the supply of social and affordable housing. Details will be set out in guidance to follow.
  • Working with social landlords to increase allocations to homeless households.
  • Developing national guidance for local authorities to support good practice in converting temporary accommodation to permanent homes.

The Scottish Government’s full response to the report sets out a number of longer-term actions, including consideration of how to make best use of the funding available for homelessness services. A further £2 million will be provided to support Rapid Rehousing Transition Plans (RRTPs) this year and an announcement on future funding allocations from the Ending Homelessness Together Fund will be made later this year.

Ashley Campbell, policy and practice manager at CIH Scotland said:

“Our work with local authorities across Scotland has shown that significant progress has been made in transforming homelessness services though RRTPs and the financial support provided by the Scottish Government. Thanks to this proactive approach, 93 per cent of local authorities told us they were able to invest in new homelessness prevention activities and 26 local authorities across Scotland are now offering Housing First.

“However, persisting challenges following the pandemic, the ongoing cost of living crisis and responding to humanitarian crises mean there is more work to do. This is why we called for RRTPs to be continued for at least another five years with dedicated funding. We welcome the additional £2 million funding that has been announced, but local authorities need certainty over the future of RRTPs beyond this financial year in order to plan services and provide best value for money.

“Scotland has a proud legacy of progressive homeless legislation and taking a person-centred, rights-based approach to supporting people in need. If we are to keep building on this legacy, we need to keep investing in affordable housing supply and homelessness services. The Scottish Government must move quickly to publish detailed guidance on the national acquisition plan to support the delivery of much needed social and affordable homes.”

Notes to editors
  1. The Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) is the independent voice for housing and the home of professional standards. Our goal is simple – to provide housing professionals with the advice, support and knowledge they need to be brilliant. CIH is a registered charity and not-for-profit organization. This means that any money we make is put back into the organisation and funds the activities we carry out to support the housing sector. We have a diverse membership of people who work in both the public and private sectors, in 20 countries on five continents across the world. Further information is available at: cih.org
  2. For more information, please contact Ashley Campbell, policy and practice manager, CIH Scotland at campbell@cih.org