Winter Homelessness Inexcusable After Pandemic Response

Highlands and Islands MSP John Finnie (pictured) has said winter homelessness is “inexcusable” following the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As part of the response to pandemic the Scottish Government provided funding via Highland council to ensure that everyone had access to accommodation to help control the spread of the virus.

The latest available figures show that homelessness rates in the Highland Council area remained largely unchanged in 2019/20 compared to 2018/19.

John Finnie said:

“The response to the pandemic has shown that we absolutely have the means to end rough sleeping.

“Practically overnight street homelessness was almost eliminated in Scotland.

“Given that, it is utterly inexcusable for anyone to be forced into homelessness at any time, but especially in the winter.

“This has certainly been a difficult year but there are lessons we can learn, including that we are more than capable to ending street homelessness if we work together.”