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Report praises homeless work

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By Fiona Reid
Report praises homeless work

HELP for the homeless in the region has improved ‘significantly’, a report revealed yesterday

The Scottish Housing Regulator has published a report of its inquiry into Dumfries and Galloway’s Housing Options and Homeless Service. And they say the local authority is working more effectively with its Registered Social Landlord partners and has ‘significantly increased the number of lets to people who are homeless’.

The amount of time people spend in temporary accommodation waiting on a home has also been reduced. The council commissioned a large scale review of the service in 2016, after the regulator identified weaknesses which the council was slow to address.

Assistant director at the Scottish Housing Regulator Kathleen McInulty said: “The council is now delivering improved outcomes for people who are homeless, and whose homelessness can be prevented, as a result of the significant changes it has made since 2016. It acknowledges that further improvement is required in ensuring access to homelessness applications and in the provision of temporary accommodation.

“We expect the council to review and update its plans for further improvements to take account of our recommendations.”

Recognising the improvements, councillor John Martin, vice chairman of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee, said: “This is very much as a result of the hard work and commitment of our staff and in conjunction with key partners. While improvement has been evidenced, every effort will be made to continue to take the service forward both strategically and operationally.”