CIH Scotland welcomes proposals for better standards of temporary accommodation
Responding to the Scottish Government consultation on temporary accommodation standards, CIH Scotland has supported the proposal to improve standards of accommodation and ensure that no homeless household spends long periods of time in unsuitable accommodation.
However, CIH Scotland also states that Scottish Government must provide adequate support, resources and time for local authorities to meet new obligations. The consultation proposes extending the Unsuitable Accommodation Order (UAO), which puts a seven day limit on the time that households can spend in ‘unsuitable’ accommodation, to all households. The UAO currently only applies to pregnant women and households with children.
It is also suggested that advisory minimum standards for temporary accommodation should be introduced, followed by mandatory standards at a later date.
Ashley Campbell, Policy and Practice manager at CIH Scotland said,
“We absolutely support measures to improve the condition of temporary accommodation and want to see a move towards better minimum standards of housing across all tenures, regardless of how long a household might be staying there. Poor housing can make a difficult situation much worse and we need to make sure that everyone can access decent accommodation when they need it. We also agree that standards shouldn’t be just about the physical condition of the property. Temporary homes need to be located close to schools, employment, family or other networks so that if a household loses their home, they can maintain some continuity in other aspects of their life.
“However, local authorities will need time and resources to make changes to the way that temporary accommodation is used and to ensure alternatives are in place if needed. Local Authorities have already committed to reducing the use of temporary accommodation with actions set out in their five-year Rapid Rehousing Transition Plans. We would like to see timescales for any changes aligned as far as possible with these existing plans.”
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 organisation. This means that the 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 www.cih.org
2. CIH Scotland’s full response to the consultation can be viewed here: http://www.cih.org/publication-free/display/vpathDCR/templatedata/cih/publication-free/data/Scotland/CIH_Scotland_response_to_temporary_accommodation_consultation
3. For further information, please contact Ashley Campbell, policy and practice manager at firstname.lastname@example.org