Latest Public Sector News

17.10.17

Government shortfall on housing benefit could hit councils

A recent study has suggested that the government’s latest plans to cap mental health supported housing provision could come £80 a week short of what is needed.

Charity Rethink Mental Illness said that in five out of six case studies of mental health benefits, the proposed plan offered less than the money required for a person to live in supported housing.

The government’s review lists the likely weekly cost of the benefits as £175, including both rent and service charge. However, this figure would only fund a person living in a ‘move on flat’ according to the group.

Although the funding would be more than enough for this kind of accommodation, the report argued that other forms of housing, such as group homes, mental health hostels and individual flats would all cost more than the proposed figure.

The study pointed out that the effects of such a shortfall would be felt by local authorities who would have to provide a ‘top-up’ to benefits to struggling people.

“The future of supported housing is in serious doubt because of Government plans to radically change how it’s funded,” commented Brian Dow, director of external affairs at Rethink Mental Illness.

“Our new research demonstrates that under existing plans, those with the highest support plans will no longer have the guarantee of their rent being met by housing benefit.

“This could spell disaster for people with mental illness and the public services that support them.”

The organisation concluded that the government should scrap its existing benefit cap plan and produce an alternative funding mechanism.

In addition, there are calls to commit to a quality-based set of guidelines in order to ensure that standards stay high and reduce unsatisfactory experiences.

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become a PSE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News

comment

Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... more >

interviews

Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need ... more >

the raven's daily blog

Utilising data to best deliver meaningful public services

14/11/2019Utilising data to best deliver meaningful public services

Public Sector Executive’s Matt Roberts explains how living in a modern, interconnected world, as we do, means public sector organisations cannot afford to ignore the rol... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

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 feeling of imminent change than the article James Palmer, mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, has penned for us on p28. In it, he highlights... read more >