Friday, 16 September 2011

Homelessness - we need your stories and ideas

The Scottish Government has a target that by 31 December 2012, all unintentionally homeless households will be entitled to permanent accommodation. This is a change from the current situation where only households that are deemed to be in ‘priority need’ are entitled to permanent accommodation.

Progress has been made since the target was set nearly 10 years ago. By June around 87% of unintentionally homeless people were being assessed as ‘priority need’. Some parts of the country like Dundee and Orkney have already reached the target, but others still have some way to go.

This is why we are working with Scottish Churches Housing Action to see if we can find what more needs to be done in order that the target is reached. Given the scale of financial pressures, many now think it is unlikely that the target will be reached by the end of next year – but we want to play our part in making sure it is achieved as soon as possible.

We’ll be reporting more on this at next year’s General Assembly. To help us with this report we need your help. We are looking for examples of local church projects which work with homeless people. If your church is involved, for instance by hosting a night shelter, raising funds, offering a drop-in facility or something else then we would be pleased to hear from you – email

On 30 September we are holding a conference in Edinburgh with Scottish Churches Housing Action to look at the policy issues in more detail. We are hoping a range of people will be there, from local and national government, churches, housing associations and homelessness charities. There are still a few places left, if you would like to find out more, download the flyer which has information about the timetable and how to register.

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