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17.5% increase in children homeless at Christmas since 2015

December 23, 2019 9:00 AM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrats today said it is a "tragedy" that 12,300 children didn't have a home to call their own last Christmas and called for a "social rent revolution".

Parliamentary questions by the party have shown that in 2015 there were 10,508 children categorised as homeless within the live applications on Christmas Day. In 2018, it totalled 12,343.

Scottish Liberal Democrat housing spokesperson Caron Lindsay said:

"Housing is a basic human need and it is a key responsibility of any government to ensure that people have a warm and secure home, especially at this time of year.

"These new statistics show that over 12,000 children - almost the capacity of the Hydro - are not so lucky.

"What's more, there were almost 2,000 more children homeless last Christmas compared to 2015 - a 17.5% increase. That is a tragedy.

"Life on the streets, sofa surfing or in uncertain temporary accommodation can take a huge toll on people's mental and physical health. It causes real disruption to children's development too.

"Scotland needs a social rent revolution to help fix the housing market. Building more homes for social rent would re-establish it as a valid long-term option for people, and help drive down the cost of other types of housing.

"The Conservatives must also fix their cruel policies which are putting people at greater risk of homelessness, starting with the broken system of Universal Credit."