The 2007 Comprehensive Spending Review in Scotland
By: Shelter Scotland Published: February 2007
This is the submission from Shelter Scotland, Scottish Churches Housing Action, the Chartered Institute of Housing in Scotland and Scottish Council for Single Homeless to the 2007 Scottish Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR), covering 2008-2011.
- The 2007 Comprehensive Spending Review in Scotland (PDF 116.6 KB)
The main points of the submission are:
- Between 2001-2006 there has been a period of intensive housing and property law reform on a scale not seen for decades. We have a homelessness framework that is applauded throughout Europe. The next parliamentary term should be about delivering effectively on that new legal and policy framework. Delivering effectively means funding adequately.
- House waiting lists, the number of homeless people in temporary accommodation and house prices all show signs of increasing strain in the Scottish housing system, none of which were alleviated by the modest increases in investment in the 2004 CSR.
- There is a pressing case for a housing investment programme of no less than 10,000 rented homes per year over the three years of the CSR. Even a programme on this scale is half of the average annual output in the post-war years.
- The statutory commitment that all homeless people should be entitled to a home by 2012 adds extra urgency to this case for new affordable homes. The programme could help substantially house newly-eligible homeless people, without any further reduction in lets to people on house waiting lists.
- The additional cost of this programme would be £750 million over three years. This is equivalent to 0.8 per cent of the total Scottish budget over that time.
- The programme would generate £780 million of private finance, on top of public funding.
- There would also be other significant but less easily quantifiable benefits. These range from: reductions in children living in temporary housing with knock on impacts on education; stable accommodation for marginalised groups of young people who are not in employment or training; positive impacts on health from more new and higher quality homes; greater flexibility to support economic change; positive impacts on community cohesion and tackling crime; and building on the positive contribution of social housing providers to environmental sustainability.
- Failure to meet the need for new affordable homes will place the social housing sector in difficulty. Legal obligations as regards homelessness will be under pressure; social polarisation by tenure and neighbourhood will intensify; and opportunities to provide low cost homes as part of mixed neighbourhoods will remain out of reach.