"It is vital that the Spending Review shifts the Government’s focus towards the key drivers of homelessness, including a lack of affordable housing, welfare-related poverty, and a lack of an integrated prevention approach."
Responding to the Government’s review of the Homelessness Reduction Act, Cllr David Renard, Local Government Association housing spokesperson, said:
“Since the Homelessness Reduction Act was introduced, councils have continued to work hard to manage increased demand for support and find safe and secure housing for thousands of homeless people.
“The long-term impact of coronavirus on council homelessness services, which were already under significant pressures before the pandemic, is currently unclear. It is vital that the Spending Review shifts the Government’s focus towards the key drivers of homelessness, including a lack of affordable housing, welfare-related poverty, and a lack of an integrated prevention approach.
“This means government investment in homelessness prevention, giving councils the powers to build the desperately-needed new generation in social housing the country needs and ensuring that the role of the local safety net is adequately resourced.”
Notes to editors
Before the pandemic, more than two-thirds of council homelessness services were being forced to spend more than they budgeted for on homelessness. In 2018/19 alone, councils overspent on homelessness services by a combined total of £140 million due to an increase in demand for support, and a lack of affordable housing to accommodate people at risk of homelessness.