Most of the recommendations deal with matters which are the responsibility of the local authorities. My right hon. Friend is considering whether any action is necessary on his part.
Will the Secretary of State consider two points: first, the conflict between housing authorities and social work authorities in different parts of Scotland on the same issue; and secondly, the fact that in Scotland in 1970 there was only one place of temporary accommodation for every 11,000 people whereas in England in the same year there was one place for every 2,000? Does he not think that this matter requires Government action?
Will the Minister pay particular attention to the point raised by the hon. Member for Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles (Mr. David Steel) about co-ordination between social work departments and housing managers? Will he call a conference of those officers and his own social work advisers with a view to ensuring the coordination of policies, which differ widely throughout Scotland, and removing some of the cases which ocupy the homeless list administratively, leaving the difficult cases to be dealt with more thoroughly and in greater depth?
It is too early to say whether we should call a conference. My Department wants to look carefully at the suggestion of co-operation between housing departments and social work departments. The report has been out for only 10 days. When we have looked at it in detail we will consider whether a conference is necessary.