In 1966, Shelter was set up to do what the Government, housing bodies, and local agencies were failing to do: prevent bad housing and homelessness from taking a terrible toll on people's lives.
Shelter is calling on the Chancellor, Gordon Brown, to commit the funds to build 20,000 more social rented homes each year between 2008-2011, over and above existing plans, in his next Comprehensive Spending Review in July 2007.
Shelter estimates this could lift 150,000 children out of bad housing and give them the chance of a brighter future.
1.6 million children in Britain are either homeless, trapped in temporary accommodation, or living in overcrowded or unfit housing.
In England, children in bad housing are twice as likely to leave school with no GCSEs. More than 40,000 young people aged 16-18 years living in bad housing in England have no GCSEs. Almost 310,000 children in bad housing in Britain are suffering long-term illness or disability. Each year, more than 57,000 children living in bad housing in Britain are excluded from school.
Shelter chief executive Adam Sampson said: "It's a scandal that 40 years after the plight of Cathy Come Home's on-screen family shocked the nation, the lives of 1.6 million children are today being devastated by the grim reality of homelessness and bad housing.
"It's vital that the Chancellor commits to funding 20,000 extra social homes each year to give these children a fair start in life."
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