A homeless child looks out of the window of a hostel

Local Government Association warns about number of children in temporary accommodation

The local Government Association has warned of their concern at the number of children that are spending their summer holidays in temporary accommodation, amid a housing and cost of living crisis.

The LGA have said that over 4,600 primary school classes worth of homeless children, the equivalent of around 119,840 children, are living in temporary accommodation, including 1,700 households with children in bed and breakfasts. According to the LGA, this reinforces the urgent need to ensure that more affordable homes are produced, as well as setting out a plan of further action that the government can follow to prevent an increase in homelessness.

Councillor David Renard, Local Government Association’s housing spokesperson, said:

“Living in temporary accommodation can cause great disruption for children and families. After two years of disruption to our children’s education and social development, it is crucial we make addressing the chronic housing shortage a priority.

“As well as looking to find suitable housing for those already homeless children to find permanent accommodation and minimise the risk of other households becoming homeless as a result of the rising cost of living.

This includes ensuring the welfare system is able to support families facing hardship and increasing the housing supply available to councils, as well as powers for councils to acquire empty properties and build much-needed social housing.

“The government’s upcoming cross-departmental rough sleeping strategy must also look at wider homelessness issues, including family homelessness, and consider the impact the cost-of-living crisis is expected to have on homelessness services.”

Providing affordable housing to rent will not only help with the care and support for children but will also prevent further disruption to their education and social development, following a two-year period where education and development was disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The rising cost-of-living and the potential for a further increase in homelessness, which will likely still include children and young people, is also a contributing factor for the concern and adds another layer to the urgency surrounding this matter.

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