The Government has said that it intends to spend £236 million to tackle the problem of people forced to sleep on the streets. The money will be used on providing accommodation and ensuring that those without a home are given the support that they need. Figures also released by the Government today suggest that there has been a fall on the number of people sleeping rough.
Robert Jenrick, the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, said in a statement:
“I’m determined that we end rough sleeping in this Parliament, meeting our moral obligation to support the most vulnerable in society. We will be bringing together housing, addiction, mental health and the criminal justice system as never before to tackle this social ill from every angle. The coordinated effort that we will now pursue, beginning with this review, builds on the progress we have made in recent years, reducing the number of people sleeping on the streets.”
John Healey, the Shadow Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, said on the announcement and the figures showing a fall in street sleeping:
“Any apparent fall in street sleeping is welcome, but everyone knows these misleading statistics are an unreliable undercount of the true scale of the problem. Even on these partial figures, the Government is still set to break its pledge to end rough sleeping by the end of the Parliament, which it isn’t set to achieve until 2037 at the current rate of progress.
Ministers won’t fix the crisis of rough sleeping until they deal with the root causes of the problem, which means facing up to the impact of deep cuts to housing, social security and homelessness services since 2010.”