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Scotland's major housing organisations have urged the Scottish executive to ensure that investment in housing remai...
Scotland's major housing organisations have urged the Scottish executive to ensure that investment in housing remained a key priority.

Cosla's housing spokesperson Alistair Gray called on the first minister to think about how investing in housing could have long term benefits.

He said: 'We are concerned that as far as the first minister is concerned, housing appears to be out of sight and out of mind. Scotland simply cannot afford to further reduce the already stretched housing budget.'

Mr Gray added: 'Scotland has some of the worst housing conditions in Europe any further reductions in spending would be disastrous in the fight to maintain physical housing conditions and in the struggle to eradicate dampness, condensation and fuel poverty.'

Alan Ferguson, director of the Chartered Institute of Housing in Scotland said: 'Despite recent increases in expenditure the housing budget remains nearly half of what it was in the early nineties. Housing has always been seen as an easy target when it comes to cuts but, any reductions in the housing budget will only lead to longer term problems, not least for elderly people living in sub standard housing.'

Anne Lear, chairperson of the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, joined the call for continued investment in Scotland's housing adding: 'Good quality, affordable rented housing is critical to meeting the executive's social justice targets, and to building successful, confident communities. Housing investment should be one of the executive's key priorities, not a budget to be raided to meet other commitments.'

Liz Nicholson, director of Shelter Scotland said: 'Housing is the bridge between all of the first minister's priorities announced last week. Good quality affordable housing is the foundation from which the executive can improve health, reduce crime and increase educational attainment.

'Whilst investment in housing is supporting these goals, it can also create employment. Mr McConnell should quite literally invest his money in bricks and mortar.'

Mr Gray concluded: 'The housing world is united on this issue and I am delighted to see such strong support from my colleagues. Securing investment in Scotland's Housing is a key priority for Cosla and this will form a large part of our discussions when Cosla's housing executive group meets for the first time tomorrow.'

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