In Scotland, homeless applications in 2015/2016, were down 4% on the previous year. There was a fall in 22 out of Scotland’s 32 local authorities. It’s thought that the continuing fall in homelessness, during the period of SNP administrations, is mainly due to the introduction of the Housing Options service in Scottish local authorities with an emphasis on prevention and the abolishment of the Priority Need Test in Scotland. The underlying drivers of homelessness such as UK Government welfare reforms remain the same and make the above fall something of an achievement. It is, of course, still wholly unsatisfactory that here should be any homelessness in this country.
In England, in sharp contrast, homelessness is on the rise from 11% in 2009/2010 to 32% in 2016/2017. According to a report from the National Audit Office (NAO), reported strangely in Scottish Housing News, households in temporary accommodation in March 2017, were 73% up on 2011. The NAO attribute this in the main to [Tory] welfare reforms. Homelessness has increased every year since 2010 with steep increase in rough sleeping and families living in temporary accommodation. English Ministers are accused by the NAO of being slow to understand the problem. I suspect that’s far too understanding of the NAO. Do they really think Tory minsters give a?