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SFHA reaction to Programme for Government

Programme for Government, announced by First Minister Humza Yousaf, was announced earlier this week. 

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First Minister Humza Yousaf set out the Programme for Government this week. SFHA Chief Executive Sally Thomas described it as a “missed opportunity” to unleash the potential of social housing in tackling poverty.

SFHA Chief Executive Sally Thomas said:

“In the context of a failing housing market, increasing homelessness and rising private sector rents, social housing is more important than ever. It lifts children and families out of poverty, creates thriving communities and helps tackle climate change. But with close to one in twenty people in Scotland on a waiting list for social homes, it’s clear we need to build many more. Today’s Programme for Government is therefore a missed opportunity.

“What was needed was a reinvigorated Affordable Housing Supply Programme which reflects the spiralling costs of building new homes. At the current rate of construction, we simply will not achieve the government’s target of delivering 110,000 affordable homes by 2032.

“Recently, tenants have faced impossible decisions between paying household bills and buying food as costs soared. That’s why we called on the First Minister to extend vital hardship funds until the end of this parliament. Confirmation of £30m for the Fuel Insecurity Fund is welcome: but we need to see this level of funding on an annual basis, to prevent tenants, children and families going cold or hungry each winter.”

“On climate, the social housing sector has the most energy efficient homes in Scotland, and our members want to do more. While we look forward to the Heat in Buildings Bill consultation, what we need most is certainty about the targets our members need to achieve in the coming years, and what support will be available."

SFHA is contacting Scottish Government seeking clarity as a matter of urgency.

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