Scottish Government ‘gone backwards’ on housing
The Scottish Government has “gone backwards” on its efforts to tackling inadequate housing supply, a housing charity has said.
Shelter Scotland has criticised the government for reducing funding for new homes in the 2021-22 budget, delivered by Finance Secretary Kate Forbes on Thursday.
The amount allocated to the building of more homes for the next financial year is £628.1m – a cut of £268m from the 2020-21 budget.
Overall, £923.2m has been allocated to housing expenditure in 2021-22, down from £1,165.9m last year and £1,031.6m the year before.
Alison Watson, Shelter Scotland’s director, said: “Good quality housing is literally a matter of life and death. That’s why we’ve repeatedly called on the Scottish Government to commit to reducing affordable housing need by the end of the next parliament.
“Today, they’ve not only failed to take the opportunity to do so – they’ve actually gone backwards.
“We hope to see more ambition on affordable housebuilding in next week’s Infrastructure Investment Plan and in the final Housing to 2040 document.”
Earlier this week, the charity called for housebuilding to be made “the cornerstone of Scotland’s recovery” in the budget.
It has estimated 53,000 new affordable homes, including 37,100 for social rent, needed to be built per year between 2021 and 2026 to keep up with demand.