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Taylor Swift: Homeless face being sent outside of Edinburgh

Several homeless individuals in Edinburgh are at risk of being relocated outside the city to accommodate tourists for Taylor Swift’s upcoming concert.

The City of Edinburgh Council is actively seeking “alternative accommodation” for those affected.

Due to the ongoing housing crisis, the council occasionally resorts to using tourist accommodation to house the homeless.

However, this option is not available throughout the year, especially during the summer holidays, and is reluctantly used as a temporary solution, with bookings made on a weekly basis.

Taylor Swift is scheduled to perform at Murrayfield Stadium on the 7th, 8th, and 9th of June, with a large influx of fans, many of whom have pre-booked hotel accommodations, expected to descend on the Scottish capital.

If the council is unable to find accommodation within the city, the homeless households will be relocated elsewhere in the country.

There is no evidence to suggest that homeless individuals are being evicted from their current accommodations.

Councillor Jane Meagher, convener of housing, homelessness, and fair work, stated: “The necessity to use tourist accommodation to house homeless households at times is a symptom of the housing crisis we are facing in Edinburgh.

“We are aware of the situation and are working with the affected households to find suitable, alternative accommodation.”

Shelter Scotland has labeled the situation as a “blatant injustice”.

Alison Watson, the charity’s director, said: “This situation further highlights the urgency of Scotland’s housing crisis.

“In Edinburgh, this crisis now pits people experiencing homelessness against tourists, which is a blatant injustice.

“Our frontline services have encountered people who need a bed for the night being told that their only option is to leave the city.

“A family experiencing the trauma of homelessness in Edinburgh should not have to relocate far from their job, school, and community to find emergency accommodation.”

In Scotland, there is a legal requirement to offer emergency temporary accommodation, which can include hotels, to individuals declared homeless.

The council declared a housing emergency last November due to rising homelessness figures and a shortage of available housing.

The Scottish government also declared a housing emergency earlier this month following sustained pressure from campaigners and opposition parties.

Ms. Watson is urging Holyrood to fulfill its promise of a national housing emergency action plan.

She warned that without change, the council will face the same problem during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in August.

Ms. Watson stated: “At a time when the City of Edinburgh Council has declared a housing emergency and the Scottish Housing Regulator has identified systemic failure in the city’s homelessness services, we need a different response from the Scottish government.

“Scottish ministers must fulfill their promise of a national housing emergency action plan that provides more homes and more funding for Edinburgh.

“Without this change, we can expect the same issues to arise when the festival begins in a few weeks.”

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