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MSP and housing leader call on government to do more for housing co-ops

Mr Kelly and Mr Farrell have called on the Scottish Government to take action to promote the co-operative model, giving tenants full control over their homes.

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James Kelly MSP and Paul Farrell, Director of West Whitlawburn Housing Co-operative (WWHC), last week met with the Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government Aileen Campbell MSP to discuss support for, and promotion of, the co-operative model of housing.

This follows a debate in the Scottish Parliament where Mr Kelly, who chairs the Cross Party Group (CPG) on Co-operatives highlighted the success of WWHC and used it as an exemplar of what the co-operative model can achieve. The meeting also involved Johann Lamont MSP, who held the debate, as well as officials from the Scottish Government, Co-ops UK and the Scottish Co-operative Party.

As part of the meeting, Mr Kelly and Mr Farrell have called on the Scottish Government to take action to promote the co-operative model, giving tenants full control over their homes.

James Kelly MSP said: “I am grateful to the Cabinet Secretary for meeting with us to discuss this vital issue.

“WWHC in Cambuslang shows us just how much good a housing co-operative can do for a local area, having completely transformed the community.”

“In the debate before the summer, it was promising that the government seemed supportive of the co-operative housing model, but it must now take action to promote co-operatives instead of just acknowledging them.”

Paul Farrell, Director of West Whitlawburn Housing Co-operative, said: “WWHC was delighted to be invited by the CPG on Co-operatives to meet with the Cabinet Secretary to express our concerns about the apparent lack of support and promotion of the Housing Co-operative model.

“We believe more tenants should be given the option of looking at the possibility of controlling their own housing. The model, as proven by WWHC and other co-operatives, is certainly one which has a demonstrable track record of success.”