Shetland MSP Beatrice Wishart is encouraging over 55s in Shetland to respond to Age Scotland’s housing survey. The national charity for older people is seeking the views of older people about their housing needs and household energy usage to help shape future Scottish Government policy.
Scotland’s population is ageing at a faster rate than the rest of the UK and a quarter of Scotland’s population set to be over 65 by 2043. The Scottish Government has pledged to build 50,000 new homes by the end of this Parliament, and Age Scotland wants to ensure the government have as much information as possible about the housing needs of older people to ensure the right kinds of homes are being built.
It is hoped that the findings from this survey will help to shape the Scottish Government’s housing policy as it relates to older people, with a view to how to help people live well and independently in their own or new home for as long as possible.
Commenting Ms Wishart said:
“I would encourage anyone over 55 to take part in this survey as it will help provide the Scottish Government and the Scottish Parliament the information it needs to better plan for the future. It’s important that the survey captures the experiences of people living in Shetland, which can be very different to mainland Scotland. Shetland has a high rate of fuel poverty and transport and access to amenities can be a challenge for older people.”
Adam Stachura, Head of Policy and Communications at Age Scotland, added
“The quality of the housing you live in has a profound impact on your health, especially as you reach older age. We want everyone to live well in their home and be able to use it to its full extent.
“Often people discover far too late that where they live is no longer suitable for their needs. It can become unaffordable and inefficient to heat, more inaccessible and harder to access the routine local services they need. This survey will not only help highlight how suitable homes are for an ageing population but give us great insight into at what stage people make decisions about their future.”
As an added incentive, there are five £50 cash prizes available for randomly selected participants.
Copies of the survey are available from Beatrice Wishart’s constituency office at 171 Commercial Street, Lerwick or online at age.scot/housingsurvey