Scottish Legal Aid Board to give £7m aid for projects that help people with debt
Projects that help people being made homeless because they are in debt are to receive £7 million of funding.
The Scottish Legal Aid Board (Slab) is distributing grants to schemes across the country.
Seventeen projects will receive funding to help indebted people at court who face losing their home through legal action.
The projects will offer more in-depth advice to help those struggling with money to find sustainable solutions to their debt problem.
The cash, comprising £4.8m from the Scottish Government and £2.2m from the independent Money Advice Service, is available between now and 2015.
Projects that help people to navigate the civil court process, including for small-claims cases, are also in line to benefit.
Organisations such as Citizens Advice and Shelter Scotland are among recipients.
Slab chief executive Lindsay Montgomery said the money would “enhance the provision of help for people in Scotland who require assistance with legal and financial problems”.
He said: “The projects will play an important role in helping find long-term solutions for people struggling with financial difficulties by dealing with the underlying debts that are often the root cause of housing problems. Spread across Scotland, they will be seeking solutions that prevent homelessness and try to put in place sustainable debt solutions.”
Justice secretary Kenny MacAskill said the funding underlined the Scottish Government’s commitment to “ensure that people get the help they need to deal with problems, such as multiple debts, repossession and eviction”.
Eleanor Hamilton, principal solicitor at Shelter Scotland, said the funding announcement was “great news for people in danger of losing their home throughrepossession or eviction, or in desperate need of money and debt advice”.
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