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Welfare Reforms Set To Impact Women

by Laura Berry

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

Orchard and Shipman AngelaA recent report from the Scottish Government has revealed that women are set to be hit most hardest by the recent welfare reforms, which has seen cuts and changes to housing, income and child care benefits.

Angela McLachlan, director of Letfirst a leading supplier of private rented housing for those on low income or benefit support, says that these changes come as no surprise and will have significant impact on its tenants the majority of whom are female and/or single parent families.

She said: “The report released yesterday by the Scottish Government, highlighting the disproportionate effects that welfare reforms could have on the female half of the population, comes as no surprise to us.

“Nearly half of those we house are single parent families, and around 65% of our tenants are female, which means that these changes particularly to housing, income and child benefits are most likely to affect them and their housing needs.

“Low income and benefit reforms will create extra barriers for women – especially those in single parent families – in a number of areas, including their ability to find adequate housing for themselves and their families.

“Providing housing for the most vulnerable members of society, and those at risk of becoming vulnerable, is what we do and why we set up our Letfirst scheme, offering a no deposit, no tenant fee approach to letting which allows those on benefits and lower incomes to access private rents – breaking down some barriers to housing.

“Our model has proven particularly successful in Edinburgh and the Lothians so far, where we have worked with around 600 landlords to provide private rented housing to over 1200 households; including around 780 women and 590 single parent families. These numbers demonstrate the scalability of the model, and its unique success.

“This model, which successfully utilises the private rented sector to provide housing to those in need, is just one way of mitigating the issues and barriers to housing caused by welfare reform.”

Statement issued on behalf of Letfirst as part of a media relations and PR campaign.

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