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Rough Sleeping

Volume 651: debated on Monday 10 December 2018

Following the publication of the Government’s Rough Sleeping Strategy on 13 August this year, on Saturday I published a delivery plan setting out the progress made so far on tackling rough sleeping, and further detail on how we intend to deliver the 61 commitments made in the strategy. I have also announced our plans for the remaining £11 million of the 2019-20 Rough Sleeping Initiative funding, which will be targeted at local authorities not funded through the Rough Sleeping Initiative this year.

Delivery plan

The Rough Sleeping Strategy is a £100 million package of commitments focused around prevention, intervention and recovery: introducing necessary policies and programmes to help those who find themselves on the streets today, and laying the groundwork for our 2027 vision in which rough sleeping is prevented and those who do find themselves at crisis point are quickly supported into settled accommodation with appropriate support. It is a cross-Government effort, with contributions from seven Departments, all focused on achieving our commitment to halve rough sleeping by 2022 and end it by 2027.

The delivery plan sets out detailed progress on many of the key commitments made in the strategy, including our new rapid rehousing pathway, which brings together funding for new specialist navigators, local lettings agencies, supported lettings, and our new Somewhere Safe to Stay rapid assessment hubs. It provides an update on ongoing work such as the Rough Sleeping Initiative and the three Government-backed Housing First pilots. It sets out key milestones and expected delivery dates for each of the 61 commitments made, and also highlights just a few of the projects we have funded, and people we have already helped.

The delivery plan sets out further detail on the expert adviser team we have put in place to deliver the Rough Sleeping Initiative, with combined experience across central and local government, housing associations, frontline services and the voluntary sector. Since their appointment this summer, our specialist advisers have been working closely with local authorities and visiting them regularly, supporting them to mobilise funding and get new projects up and running. The Rough Sleeping Initiative advisers will continue to work closely with local authorities over the coming months to monitor and maximise the impact of the initiative, as well as feeding back the challenges faced on the ground, enabling us to be responsive to changing circumstances.

In the strategy, we were clear that the work set out thus far is the first step towards achieving our goal, and as such committed to publishing an annual update to the strategy. In this delivery plan, we confirm that this annual update will comprise an update on progress, detail of any new programmes or policies we are bringing forward, and an updated delivery plan for the coming year.

Further £11 million for the 2019-20 Rough Sleeping Initiative

In the strategy we announced £45 million of funding for the Rough Sleeping Initiative next year, in addition to the £30 million funding provided this year. In September we provisionally allocated £34 million of that funding to the areas who have been part of the initial phase of the Rough Sleeping Initiative. The remaining £11 million will be focused on those areas which have not yet been funded through the Rough Sleeping Initiative, which can demonstrate that they are developing partnerships, plans and effective interventions to achieve the goal of reducing the numbers of people sleeping on the streets of their area. Local authorities that already receive Rough Sleeping Initiative funds could apply only as part of a partnership bid across local authorities.

The Rough Sleeping Initiative will have direct oversight of how this funding is delivered. This tailored approach will ensure interventions are planned on the basis of need, the existing provision and service gaps in each area and that funding is directed to the places where it will have most impact.

The types of interventions we expect to fund include increased outreach provision, floating support, and accommodation options to help rough sleepers off the street.

Over the next few weeks, local authorities will submit initial bids and the expert Rough Sleeping Initiative adviser team will then help to refine proposals before final bids are submitted in February.