Homeless young people asked for their views by Equal Opportunities Committee

28.03.2014

Young people who have experienced homelessness have been asked to give their views to the Equal Opportunities Committee in a call for evidence on preventing youth homelessness published today.

The Committee is looking for evidence of progress following the recommendations made in its 2012 report titled, “Having and Keeping a Home: steps to preventing homelessness among young people”, in the work of everyone from the Scottish Government to local authorities and voluntary organisations.

The report highlighted a number of concerns, including some local authorities’ routine handling of 16-year-old care leavers via the homelessness route, and the need to ensure community care grants which are available to help young people on low incomes move out of residential care into a tenancy, are in place on the day a young person gets the keys to their tenancy rather than months later.

Equal Opportunities Committee Convener, Margaret McCulloch MSP said:

“Our hard-hitting report on youth homelessness in 2012 highlighted the number of young people who had been failed by a lack of support in overcoming inadequate life skills, compounded by substandard accommodation and isolation. While the report generated media headlines, we want to know whether it had any lasting impact.

“That is why two years on we are asking whether there has been an increase in support for vulnerable young people? Has there been a review of every local authority’s strategy to prevent youth homelessness? We hope that young people themselves will tell us whether any new approaches have been introduced and how effective they have been in addressing homelessness.”

The Committee will hold a one-off evidence session on its’ follow-up on youth homelessness in August this year.

The deadline for the call for evidence is Friday 23 May. The link is here –

Equal Opportunities Committee

Background

The Equal Opportunities Committee published its report ‘Having and Keeping a Home’ in October 2012. The report highlighted a series of challenges facing young people experiencing family breakdown and vulnerable care leavers in achieving independent living. The full report can be found here.

Equal Opportunities Committee @SP_EqualOpps

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