11 April 2019

The number of children in private rented housing living in severe poverty has more than doubled in a decade, new analysis from Scottish Labour reveals.

Scottish Labour analysis of Scottish government data reveals that 20,000 children in the private rented sector were living in severe poverty during the three year period between 2005/06 - 2007/08.

However, the latest three year period, covering 2015/16 to 2017/18, reveals that figure has more than doubled to 50,000.

Severe poverty is defined as being below 50 per cent of UK median income after housing cost.

Labour said the figures underlined the impact of Scotland’s housing crisis, with a lack of affordable housing pushing low income people into the under regulated and more precarious private rented sector.

The party has set a target of 12,000 council and housing association homes built per year and is working on a ‘Mary Barbour law’ to help deliver fair rents in Scotland.

Scottish Labour Housing spokesperson Pauline McNeill said:

“The housing crisis is creating acute child poverty across Scotland.

“Too many families are caught in a vicious cycle – a lack of affordable public housing forces people to rent privately and as a result they are paying rip-off rents which hammers their cost of living.

“We need an urgent change of pace – building more homes for social rent and fixing the problems in the private rented sector. Building more homes is key, social housing is the best value for money as an investment in the nation’s housing stock.

“Labour’s Mary Barbour law would give people hope that they can have secure, affordable tenancies. Only Scottish Labour has a plan for real change in the housing sector which will help the many, not the few.”



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