Reducing the number of people in temporary accommodation is a priority for the Scottish Government. We are determined to provide the support our delivery partners need to make clear progress by 2026. Getting this right will reduce the impact of homelessness on our citizens and communities and enable local authorities to direct more of their resources to support better housing outcomes for people.
Our vision in the Ending Homelessness Together action plan is for everyone to have a settled home that meets their needs which, in turn, will support our national mission to end child poverty.
To reverse the increasing trend of households in temporary accommodation, we have set out here how we will prioritise action on the recommendations that will have the most immediate impact. We will work with our partners in local government and across the housing sector to ensure we make the progress needed on our shared public responsibility of homelessness prevention and rapid rehousing.
This work will start by agreeing how to address the barriers to increasing housing supply in the short-term with COSLA, ALACHO, the Scottish Housing Regulator, SFHA and the Glasgow West of Scotland Forum of Housing Associations. This focused programme of work will allow different approaches to be taken to respond to significant housing pressures over the next two to three years.
A parallel set of discussions will be held with partners in the areas facing the greatest pressures in temporary accommodation in addition to ALACHO-wide discussions with heads of housing to set the direction of travel.
The aim of these discussions is to create an authorising environment to empower local decision making in response to the temporary accommodation pressures local authorities are facing. Any flexibilities introduced will be temporary to retain a clear sight on the longer-term ambitions and will be supported with new guidance. The outcome of these discussions and updates on progress made against each action will be reported to the Housing Review Group, the Homelessness Prevention and Strategy Group and the Housing to 2040 Strategic Board.
The Scottish Government is making £3.5 billion available in this parliamentary term to support the delivery of more affordable and social homes. Action to maximise the use of resources to increase affordable housing supply and housing options for homeless households as quickly as possible is key, alongside a continued focus on our long-term ambition for a housing system that works for everyone.
The Scottish Government will act at a national level to ensure consistency in positive experiences for homeless households. Recognising that challenges vary from authority to authority, we will take targeted action to bring about a more rapid reduction in households in temporary accommodation in the areas where it is concentrated, in partnership with local authorities facing particular difficulties in the central belt.
The Scottish Government will continue to work collaboratively with the homelessness sector, led by the Homelessness Prevention and Strategy Group, to deliver the change needed in response to the report. Quarterly Homelessness Prevention and Strategy Group meetings provide an opportunity for live feedback from the sector on the impact of actions to reduce the pressure in temporary accommodation.
The challenges in the use of temporary accommodation are not insignificant but we have a solid basis on which to build and make progress for homeless households. Scotland has a strong record of investment in new social and affordable housing supply. We also have strong homelessness rights and a clear commitment to preventing and ending homelessness, underpinned by our £100 million Ending Homelessness Together Fund.
We will continue to listen and respond to our delivery partners as they tell us what they need and what they will do to deliver on shared ambitions to reduce the use of and time spent in temporary accommodation.
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