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Housing Support Services

Volume 407: debated on Monday 23 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment he has made of the implementation and operation of the Supporting People initiative; how many complaints have been received about the initiative; how many people are employed in administering the scheme; and whether it has achieved its objectives in terms of targeting the individuals who should benefit from it. [120152]

The Supporting People initiative has been operating successfully since its introduction on 1 April 2003, providing assistance for approximately 12,000 service users in 850 supported housing schemes; the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, which is responsible for the administration of the scheme, has received just one formal complaint about the operation of the initiative; there are 25 people working on the administration of the scheme in the Housing Executive; and the scheme has achieved its objectives in terms of ensuring that those who were eligible for free housing support services under the old arrangements continue to receive these services.