Comhairle stress housing need

Representatives of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar met with Housing and Transport minister Keith Brown this week to discuss the way forward for housing in the Islands.

The Comhairle outlined the particular difficulties facing the development of affordable housing in the islands and highlighted the current issues of homelessness, a housing waiting list of over 700 and the highest levels of fuel poverty in Scotland.

Leader Angus Campbell said; “More houses have to be built to allow more young people a chance to live here. The meeting provided us with an opportunity to outline to the Minister the issues we face, in particular the additional cost of building housing on the islands, and the Minister agreed to consider the proposals if we brought forward a model for how housing could be better funded in the Western Isles. We will continue to work with the Scottish Government on how we get more investment for housing and how we can deal with the issues of homelessness and fuel poverty.”

Earlier in the day, the Minister confirmed that voluntary organisations, charities and churches would be eligible to use the Air Discount Scheme.

Leader Angus Campbell said; “The reinstatement of voluntary organisations, charities and churches to the Air Discount Scheme is welcome. However, I am still of the view that the scheme could, and should, be extended to apply for businesses as well. We will continue to seek a means whereby that can happen.”