The First Minister has backed a multi-million pound fund to help support more than 20,000 tenants amid the cost of living crisis.
Nicola Sturgeon attended the launch of the £6m ‘Here for You’ fund by the Wheatley Group, a housing, care and property-management group.
The funds will support tenants from Wheatley Group-registered social landlords from across central and southern Scotland.
It comes as energy bills are tipped to reach around £5,000 by January 2023, while inflation could soar to as high as 13% this year.
Sturgeon said: “Households are facing a cost-of-living crisis unlike anything most of us have seen in our lifetimes, with the most vulnerable being hit the hardest.
“So it is vital that all those with the power and means to provide support do so.
“That’s why I’m so pleased to see the launch of Wheatley’s £6m cost-of-living crisis fund which I know will provide essential support for those who need it most.”
The housing firm has also helped tenants claim £19.6m in welfare benefits during the pandemic, while delivering food parcels and vouchers.
Jo Armstrong, chair of the Wheatley Group, said: “We know these are extremely tough times – and with winter will only become tougher for tenants.
“That is why Wheatley, more than ever, is doing all we can to protect the people we work for across Scotland from the worst impacts of the cost-of-living crisis.”
Ms Armstrong said the campaign and fund will support more than 20,000 people most affected in communities across central and southern Scotland.
She added: “’Here for You’ will expand and strengthen further programmes Wheatley have put in place throughout the pandemic.
“Programmes that we know – through hard experience – provide essential, vital support to people in need.”