Today, the Homelessness Reduction Bill has passed successfully through its second reading, after receiving backing from both the Government and the Opposition. This means that the bill will now progress to committee stage, where detailed examination and discussion of amendments will take place.

The Homelessness Reduction Bill seeks to prevent people from losing their home in the first place and make sure all homeless people can get help when they need it.

As it stands, many homeless people who approach their council for help can be turned away because the law says they are not in ‘priority need’ - a status largely reserved for families with children.

Liz Rutherfoord, SHP Chief Executive, said: “Today, we are one step closer to local authorities having a duty of care to thousands more vulnerable people at risk of homelessness.

“We share the concerns raised by some MPs in today’s debate that adequate funding must be provided for local authorities if this legislation is to be effective.

“However the principle of ensuring that help is available to everyone who is at risk of homelessness as early as possible is a vitally important one, and should be supported as part of a wider joined up homelessness prevention strategy.”