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27 August 2019, 14:35
A charity has launched a new campaign calling for new legislation which secures legal rights to a "decent home" for everyone in the country.
Research by YouGov for Shelter Scotland found 76% of respondents support a new law being created to ensure adequate housing for all.
The charity is now launching its Are You With Us? campaign calling for such legislation to be introduced, which is being backed by crime writer Val McDermid.
She said: "Home is a place where you're safe to be yourself. Where you can relax, where you can express yourself and where you don't feel under threat.
"Too many people don't have that privilege. That's why I'm backing Shelter Scotland's campaign."
The latest Scottish Government figures indicate there are more than 14,000 homeless children currently in Scotland and nearly 11,000 households in temporary accommodation.
The survey had a sample size of 1,005 Scottish adults who were questioned in December 2018.
It also shows 88% agreed that everyone in the country should have a legal right to a safe, secure and affordable home.
The campaign, launched on Tuesday, will be visiting towns and cities across Scotland to gain public support for the petition.
Graeme Brown, director of Shelter Scotland, said: "Too many people in Scotland don't have access to the basic right of a decent and affordable home, which is simply wrong in the 21st century in one of the world's wealthiest countries.
"The evidence is clear, people's rights to a home need to be significantly strengthened.
"Our research shows that the people of Scotland support changes to give everyone the right to a decent home.
"Through this campaign we want the people of Scotland to know that a good home is their right, not a privilege, and it should be law. We also want them to feel a sense of injustice that so many people don't have access to this basic need.
"We want the right to a home and enshrining it in law to be at the forefront of everyone's mind.
"We want people to sign our petition so we can influence government policy."
Housing Minister Kevin Stewart said: "The Scottish Government is committed to ending homelessness across Scotland, which already has some of the strongest homelessness rights in the world.
"We are delivering the transformational change we committed to in our Ending Homelessness Together Action Plan to make sure that that anyone facing homelessness is supported into a permanent, settled home as quickly as possible.
"That's why we have allocated more than half of our £50 million Ending Homelessness Together Fund to move to a system of rapid rehousing which includes the Housing First approach for people with complex needs."