Conservative Mayor Candidate welcomes homelessness funding

Conservative mayoral candidate Laura Evans has welcomed news that authorities across Greater Manchester are to get over £3.7m to continue providing interim accommodation and support to people at risk of homelessness, helping them to get back on their feet as the recovery from coronavirus continues.

The funding is part of the Next Steps Accommodation programme, which aims to build on the success of the Government’s efforts to provide emergency accommodation for rough sleepers during the pandemic. This programme successful saw emergency accommodation secured for more than 15,000 people either sleeping rough or at risk of homelessness.

It does this by making financial resources available to support local authorities and their partners provide accommodation and support that prevents the people who have been helped from returning to the streets. The funding can be used by local authorities to help people find supported housing or secure a tenancy in the private rented sector, extend or secure alternative interim accommodation or where possible help people to reconnect with friends or family.

The Next Steps Accommodation Programme is also funding long term accommodation for rough sleepers, with the first 3,300 units set to be delivered by the end of the year, backed by £161 million of investment. A total of 6,000 of these ‘move on’ style accommodation units will be built over the course of the parliament, providing secure homes for rough sleepers, and helping deliver the Government’s ambition of ending rough sleeping for good by 2024.

Commenting, Laura said:

“Throughout the pandemic, we successfully got thousands of rough sleepers off the streets and into emergency accommodation. 

“I am delighted that Greater Manchester is now set to receive funding from the Government’s Next Steps Accommodation Programme, which will help us to build on this progress to ensure as few people as possible return to the streets.

“This cash will make a real difference to the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in our community, helping them to rebuild their lives, away from the streets in safer accommodation”

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said:

“The incredible national effort to support rough sleepers during the pandemic has protected many lives and is widely regarded as one of the most successful programmes of its kind in the world. I’m hugely grateful to all those involved.

“This funding will ensure that vulnerable people and rough sleepers continue to have safe accommodation and the care and support they need, to ensure as few as possible return to the streets.