The Scottish Government has just announced that it will spend over £590 million in 2017/2018 so that there are more affordable homes in Scotland. According to Inside Housing the English Government will spend £8 billion over the next 4 years thus around £2 billion in 2017/18. The arithmetic is simple. England has 10 times the population of Scotland so to be at the same level, per head of population, the Tories should be spending around 10 times as much or £24 billion in 2017/18 and not just 2. So, the Westminster Tories will spend roughly 4 times the Holyrood SNP but on a population 10 times greater. Thus, per head of population, the Scottish Government will be spending 2.5 times more on affordable housing. Yet, the need is even greater in England to start off with. According to Estate Agent Today:
‘The number of affordable homes built in 2015/16 fell by 52 per cent and was the lowest number in 24 years. Just 6,554 social rented homes were built in the same year.’
The Scottish Government built 33,490 affordable homes over the last five years. Again bear in mind Scotland has only one tenth of the population. Here’s an extract from the Scottish government release:
‘A good supply of affordable homes is vital to ensuring everyone has an equal chance of getting on in life. That is why it is key to this Government’s commitment to tackling poverty, reducing inequality and building strong local communities. It also boosts the economy by supporting 14,000 jobs right across the country. We’re determined to increase and accelerate housing supply – working in partnership with councils and housing associations to deliver quality homes to fit local needs. The Scottish Government’s extra homes pledge is expected to support, on average, 14,000 jobs a year in construction and other related industries over the next five years.’
Yet, 56% of women are currently expected to vote No and around 70% of over-60s said they would do the same. Who benefits most from the SNP’s anti-austerity measures….why women and the elderly of course! Why are they not getting this message?