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Social housing 'needed to save thousands'

Thousands of working people face being kicked out of their homes, warns Citizens Advice Bureau

Thousands of working people face being kicked out of their homes, the Citizens Advice Bureau warned yesterday.

It urged the government to commit to building social housing, having recorded over 10,000 cases of families being on the verge of homelessness last year.

"An urgent commitment to sorting out our woefully inadequate stock of affordable housing would help the supply of homes start to catch up with demand," said the bureau's chief executive Gillian Guy.

She said that the 26 per cent increase in the number of those at risk of losing their homes results from a nationwide wage freeze and Con-Dem attacks on benefits such as the bedroom tax that have pushed many households into debt and financial crisis.

The government however has focused on home-buying, setting aside £6 billion in its new Budget for the help to buy scheme.

"Under this government house building fell to its lowest level in peacetime since the 1920s," Labour shadow housing minister Emma Reynolds said.

"Rising demand for housing must be matched with rising supply if this scheme is to bring the cost of housing within the reach of low and middle-income earners," she added.

In response to Citizens Advice's warning, Housing Minister Kris Hopkins limply said that the Treasury had "put in place a range of support including working with the Big Lottery Fund to make £65 million available to debt advice charities over the next two years.

"I would urge anyone with money worries to seek early help to avoid losing their home."

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