Section 1 — Amendment of section 25 of the 1987 Act

Part of Homelessness etc (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3 – in the Scottish Parliament at 2:32 pm on 5th March 2003.

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Photo of Linda Fabiani Linda Fabiani Scottish National Party 2:32 pm, 5th March 2003

I remind members that the Scottish Council for Single Homeless estimates that 42 per cent of rough sleepers initiative clients are under 25. Young people are much less likely to be in paid work and their wages are lower, so they are very much disadvantaged within a housing system that is dominated by home ownership. Within the under-25 age group, problems can potentially arise when there is disruption to education, training and employment. There is also the potential for damage to health due to varying social factors. Such problems can create serious long-term exclusion with a lifetime of costs for both the individual and society.

I am not convinced that a code of guidance would take care of the matter. We should show a real commitment to our young people by ensuring that those who are in what is obviously a vulnerable age group receive the protection of the law. That protection should be enshrined in the legislation. I press amendment 7.