Poverty and Inequality

03.05.18

Councils turn away thousands of homeless youth due to lack of funding

A leading charity has today revealed that the majority of young homeless (or at risk of homelessness) people who reached out to local government were not met with “positive actions”, leading to their homelessness not “being successfully prevented or dealt with.”

The freedom of information request from homeless charity Centrepoint found 58 per cent of the 86,000 young people who approached their local authority in 2016/17 failed to have their issue resolved, leading to calls for more investment into local councils to reduce youth homelessness.

The report, published yesterday, noted that only 1 in 10 of these young people were accepted as statutorily homeless, a term that describes anyone who is unintentionally homeless in ‘priority need’, which includes under 18s, pregnant women and those with severe mental or physical health needs.

Over half (54%) of homeless young people left their last settled home because their parents, other relatives or friends were no longer willing to accommodate them.

Parents no longer willing or able to accommodate their children was by far the biggest reason for a young person to be homeless, with 38 per cent of interactions logged citing this as the reason.

London received the largest intake of young homeless people from 2016/17 with 10,500 reports logged into their records. The north west region was a second, receiving 9,200 requests for help in finding accommodation from the nation’s youth.

The charity believes that English councils could have to assess 45,000 more vulnerable under-25s on top of the current intake, under the Homelessness Reduction Act (HRA).

In its recommendations, the report called on central government to “provide tools and guidance” to local councils to collect all data on youth homelessness and determine the scale of the problem nationally.

The report said: “Central government and local authorities must work together to ensure the Homelessness Reduction Act funding is allocated appropriately. The additional financial costs to local authorities inherent in the HRA must be matched by funding from central government.

“Local authority staff are responsible for data collection and recording and must be held accountable for quality. Central government must then act on the local needs reflected in the data by ensuring that funding is distributed appropriately.”

Cllr Martin Tett, the LGA’s housing spokesman, said: “Councils understand that every single person experiencing homelessness is facing an individual tragedy, and are determined to protect residents, especially young people, by preventing homelessness from happening in the first place.

“Local authorities do all they can to support homeless people in their communities into appropriate accommodation as quickly and as effectively as possible, but the reality is that demand for this support is growing, at the same time as councils face significant funding pressures.

“We also need to see the full range of public bodies to cooperate with councils in addressing homelessness, and in the long term, it’s crucial that all councils are able to borrow to build new homes and adapt welfare reforms to prevent homelessness from happening in the first place.”

 

Enjoying PSE? Subscribe here to receive our weekly news updates or click here to receive a copy of the magazine!

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

Councillors approve plans for HS2 transformation at Leeds Station

17/10/2018Councillors approve plans for HS2 transformation at Leeds Station

Councillors have endorsed a “milestone” plan to transform Leeds station in preparation for HS2 arriving in the area. The Leeds C... more >
Scandal-hit Conservative council elects Labour leader

16/10/2018Scandal-hit Conservative council elects Labour leader

Labour have managed to take control of a Conservative-led council following an “internal war” among the Tory councillors, with Labour... more >
Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

16/10/2018Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

A former employee of Westminster City Council has been found guilty of stealing nearly £1m from the council pension fund. Ian Woodall,... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
Councillors approve plans for HS2 transformation at Leeds Station

17/10/2018Councillors approve plans for HS2 transformation at Leeds Station

Councillors have endorsed a “milestone” plan to transform Leeds station in preparation for HS2 arriving in the area. The Leeds City Council executive board approved the strategic... more >
Thousands of babies at risk of harm due to children’s services cuts

17/10/2018Thousands of babies at risk of harm due to children’s services cuts

Almost 16,000 babies are growing up in “toxic” households where they are at risk of harm following unprecedented financial strain on children’ services, according to a report by... more >

the raven's daily blog

What cities should become

15/10/2018What cities should become

Tom Leaver, project manager at Future Cities Catapult, examines the rationale behind the creation of the City Data Sharing Toolkit, and explores how this is driving a seismic shift in how cities evolve into our data-rich future. We’re used to big-screen sci-fi future cities being dystopian monoliths to everything wrong with the worl... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

Inspiring leadership in social value

15/10/2018Inspiring leadership in social value

We have learned a lot since the last National Social Value Conference, with many organisations both in the public and private sectors now embeddi... more >
Is fair funding possible, or pie in the sky?

15/10/2018Is fair funding possible, or pie in the sky?

David Phillips, associate director at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, discusses the current health of local government finance, and how a bette... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >
The Convention of the North

15/10/2018The Convention of the North

Steve Rotheram, mayor of the Liverpool City Region, discusses the findings of the very first Convention of the North, which was held in Newcastle... more >

interviews

Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >
Michael King: Time for Ombudsman reform

06/08/2018Michael King: Time for Ombudsman reform

Michael King first joined the Local Government Ombudsman service back in 2004 as deputy ombudsman. At the start of 2017, he was appointed as the ... more >
Helping a city understand itself

06/08/2018Helping a city understand itself

SPONSORED INTERVIEW The urban landscape is changing. How can local authorities keep up with citizen behaviour? Stephen Leece, managing directo... more >
Modern policing: the future is bright

06/08/2018Modern policing: the future is bright

SPONSORED INTERVIEW The public sector, and policing in particular, has often been criticised as being slow to adapt to change. But now, says L... more >

public sector focus

View all News