Draft strategy to go before councillors

The draft document will go before councillors on Tuesday.
The draft document will go before councillors on Tuesday.

A new strategy outlining Dumfries and Galloway’s priorities for delivering its housing services will go before councillors next week.

The draft Local Housing Strategy 2018-23 will be discussed at the Communities Committee meeting on June 5.

It sets out the vision of the council and partners for the future of housing across all tenures and types of accommodation, taking account of national priorities as well as local needs.

The document will now be used when making decisions about housing across the region for the next five years and it follows wide engagement with organisations including the Tackling Poverty Reference Group, D&G LGBT Plus and LGBT Youth, the Third Sector and the Poverty Alliance. The Strategic Housing Forum also played a key role in developing the strategy.

The council’s vision for housing is: ‘Everyone in our region will have access to a high quality affordable home that is warm, safe, provides good access to services and meets their needs at every stage of life’ and committee chairman Councillor Andy Ferguson said the document showed how the council would support sustainability in the area’s communities.

He continued: “A thriving community depends on training services and facilities such as schools, shops, cultural venues, medical facilities and good transport links. This strategy outlines how the council will support this sustainability by many means including the delivery of the £1 million Town Centre Living Fund and working with the Dumfries and Galloway Small Communities Housing Trust to deliver community led housing in rural areas.

“I am proud of the huge progress that has been made in improving the outcome of Homeless people in our region. The council will ensure that appropriate resources are focused on this issue at a local level.”

Commenting further on the strategy, vice-chairman Councillor John Martin added that housing is fundamental to a community’s well-being and every resident “has a stake” in the strategy.

He added: “The strategy produced contains a wide range of actions that reflect the unique character and diversity of our region. The early engagement with stakeholders and several local groups has meant that we have produced a strategy that addresses local issues and the document has shared ownership. I hope that by the end of the strategy period we will have improved well-being for a broad range of residents.”