New report and funding initaitive seeks to address severe and multiple disadvantages in Scotland

A new report that highlights the impact that severe and multiple disadvantages have on people in Scotland has been published.

Hard Edges Scotland, commissioned by Lankelly Chase and The Robertson Trust and authored by Heriot-Watt University, found that almost 200,000 adults in Scotland experience at least one form of extreme disadvantage each year, including homelessness, substance dependency and offending.

However, when additional disadvantages such as mental ill-health and domestic violence are considered, the numbers affected more than double to nearly 450,000 people each year.

The report also details the challenges that charitable services and the public sector are facing. In particular, the report illustrates the mismatch between the multiple disadvantages people face and the fact that services are often set up to address ‘single issues’.

Key findings – each year in Scotland:

  • 5,700 adults experience three ‘core’ forms of severe and multiple disadvantage (homelessness, offending and substance dependency)
  • 28,800 experience two out of these three
  • 156,700 experience one of these three
  • Higher rates of extreme disadvantage are found in urban compared to rural areas
  • Glasgow, West Dunbartonshire, Clackmannanshire, Dundee, North Ayrshire and Aberdeen City show high prevalence of people experiencing ‘core’ forms of severe and multiple disadvantage
  • Affluent, suburban towns and the Highlands and Islands have lower rates.

Coinciding with the launch of Hard Edges Scotland, £80,000 is being made available to communities and organisations across Scotland to encourage new conversations about severe and multiple disadvantage. This is a chance for people to connect and reflect on what the findings are telling them about inequality, service responses and policy.

The fund will seek to encourage often unheard and missing voices from current discussions to have their say into how future support might look. Grants of up to £3,000 each will be given to facilitate new conversations in creative ways, including interactive events and workshops.

Grants of up to £3,000 are being made available for organisations and communities to hold new conversations in response to the findings. The application process is a simple online form that can be completed at www.lankellychase.org.uk/connected. To find out more about making a grant application, organisations are encouraged to contact: communications@lankellychase.org.uk

To view the summary and full Hard Edges Scotland research, please visit: www.lankellychase.org.uk/connected.

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