Extra cash to help council’s keep families in their homes and prevent homelessness
PUBLISHED: 05:25 25 March 2020
The number of people sleeping rough on the streets of Sudbury, Hadleigh and neighbouring towns is decreasing thanks to new initiatives introduced by councils.
Figures for the Babergh and Mid Suffolk district show that the number of homeless people in the area has dropped significantly due to an injection of funding by the local authorities.
And it is hoped that this figure will fall further thanks to government funding of more than £320,000 for 2020/21.
The funding, from the ministry of housing, communities and local government, is to build on the success that Babergh District Council (BDC) have already achieved in preventing homelessness in the district, working on prevention rather than cure.
Between April 2019 and January 2020 housing solutions officers worked directly with 284 people threatened with homelessness and needing support, of which 75 were successfully kept in their own homes.
Speaking at Sudbury Town Council earlier this month, Heather Tucker, Babergh District Council’s corporate manager for Housing Solutions, said: “The best result is where our intervention can keep someone in their own home, with prevention at the heart of our homelessness reduction strategy for the district.
“Everyone needs somewhere to live and a place they can call home and early intervention can prevent homelessness occurring in the first place.”
The team worked to house those who had no choice but to leave their properties by placing them in either council housing, private rented or temporary accommodation whilst concentrating on finding a more permanent solution.
Last September the council’s introduced the supporting lettings scheme, which specifically focuses on housing homeless people in private rented, and now with extra funding they can create three more roles to help more people access private accommodation.
The BDC strategy states: “Preventing homelessness is a priority for Babergh and Mid Suffolk councils. Everyone needs somewhere to live and a place that they can call home.
“Our vision is to end rough sleeping in our districts and work with clients as early as possible to prevent homelessness occurring.”