Page last updated at 13:59 GMT, Friday, 26 February 2010

MSPs quiz council leader over Govanhill slum housing

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Residents raised concerns about slum conditions in Govanhill

Concerns about slum housing in the Govanhill area of Glasgow are to be presented to the housing minister and the city's council leader.

Minister Alex Neil and council leader Steven Purcell are among those who will appear at a special evidence session at the Scottish Parliament next week.

They will be questioned by MSPs and residents concerned about private landlords and poor quality housing.

It follows a petition to MSPs seeking an inquiry into the issues.

Anne Lear, director of Govanhill Housing Association, submitted a petition on behalf of residents from the area on the south side of the city urging the Scottish government to look at the housing problems faced by people living there.

In 2008 she told politicians that locals felt "the south east area of Govanhill has become a ghetto for the migrant community".

The hope is that they will be listened to by the key decision-makers who are gathered round the table
Frank McAveety MSP
Committee convener

Govanhill has some of the most severe housing problems in the UK, with an estimated 750 slum flats.

The local population is ethnically mixed and has the biggest concentration of Roma families in Scotland.

MSPs on the Public Petitions Committee, who visited Govanhill last month and met local housing groups, will now take further evidence from a range of individuals.

Labour MSP Frank McAveety, the committee's convener, said: "Govanhill presents a particular housing challenge and this is a petition on behalf of local residents asking for help from national and local government.

"The hope is that they will be listened to by the key decision-makers who are gathered round the table."

The committee aims to produce evidence and highlight key issues which may influence the Housing (Scotland) Bill, which plans to abolish tenants' right to buy their council or housing association homes.

The bill is also aimed at improving the supply and quality of housing in Scotland.



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