Shelter Scotland records six per cent increase in calls for help in the past year

Written by Kate Shannon on 6 December 2016 in News

The homelessness charity said it is time for local and national government to take action to tackle homelessness

People using computers: Photo credit: Kin Cheung/AP/Press Association Images​

Shelter Scotland charity has recorded a six per cent rise in the number of people calling for help in the past year.

The homelessness charity said in the last 12 months, 20,882 calls were made to its free national helpline – an increase of six per cent on the previous year.

Meanwhile, 2,794 online digital chat advice sessions were provided and unique visits to its online pages increased to 726,000.


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Adam Lang, head of policy and communications at Shelter Scotland, said: “We know that times are tough for more and more people because we see it every day - with more calls to our free national helpline, dozens of people using our digital chat service and thousands of visits to our online advice pages.

“It’s clear from these increasing numbers of people needing help that we are still failing far too many people in our society, particularly the most vulnerable, with the most basic of human rights - the right to shelter and a home.

“It is now time for local and national government to take bold action to tackle the tragedy of homelessness head on.”

According to the charity, more than 5,200 children will wake up homeless this Christmas in Scotland and around 30,000 households were made homeless last year, with 10,500 forced to live in temporary accommodation.

Shelter Scotland will to be outside the Scottish Parliament today to highlight the plight of homeless children at Christmas and to urge MSPs to sign up to its ‘Homelessness: Far From Fixed’ campaign, which is aimed at finally fixing the human tragedy of homelessness in Scotland.

Lang continued: “It’s shameful that each year there are thousands of people sleeping rough on our streets, that there are thousands more hidden homeless people sofa surfing with friends and that on Christmas morning this year more than 5,000 children in Scotland will wake up homeless in temporary accommodation.

“We are outside the Scottish Parliament today to highlight the plight of homeless children at Christmas and urge MSPs to sign up to our campaign aimed at finally fixing the human tragedy of homelessness.

“Frankly, we think it’s a disgrace that homelessness still exists in Scotland today.  We are one of the richest nations in the world, yet nearly 30,000 households became homeless last year.”

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