Housing minister Kevin Stewart calls for end to 'ghettoisation' of homeless people

Housing minister Kevin Stewart
Housing minister Kevin Stewart
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Housing Minister Kevin Stewart has welcomed support for plans to ensure no homeless people are placed in B&B accommodation for longer than a week.

A consultation found backing for extending the ban on the use of temporary accommodation - which currently applies to families with children and pregnant women - to all those needing somewhere to stay.

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There was also "strong support" for bringing in new legally enforceable standards for temporary accommodation, Mr Stewart said.

He commented as the Scottish Government published the results of its consultation, which looked at the use of temporary accommodation for homeless people.

Extending the ban on using this form of accommodation for any longer than a week could help "end the ghettoisation of homeless households", some of those who answered the consultation said.

They said such a move would provide for a "parity of rights among people who are homeless".

Mr Stewart said: "While temporary accommodation can offer an important emergency safety net for anyone who finds themselves homeless with nowhere else to go, it should be a purely temporary measure.

"These consultation responses support Scottish Government proposals to prevent anyone from living in unsuitable temporary accommodation for longer than seven days.

"From May 2021, this new legislation, a UK first, will ensure people are moved into a more appropriate, permanent home as soon as possible."

The minister added: "The consultation also demonstrated strong support for a set of legally enforceable standards, which people with experience of homelessness told us would help improve safety and standards by raising problems or issues around temporary accommodation."