On 9th January 2018 Lord Kennedy of Southwark asked Her Majesty’s Government “how many families were homeless over Christmas 2017.” The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow up question:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, research by the charity Shelter suggests that if current government policy continues as it is, 83% of areas in England will be unaffordable to those on local housing allowances by 2019-20. What assessment have Her Majesty’s Government made of the effect of the freeze on levels of homelessness? When will that freeze come to an end?
Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth: My Lords, I thank the right reverend Prelate for that mention of Shelter, which is clearly very much a partner in this, working with us on the advisory committee on homelessness. We look forward to working with Polly Neate and Shelter, and with Crisis and other organisations, in seeking to get those figures down. As I have indicated, there are challenges throughout the country, but with the resources we are committing to this, both in financial and human resources terms, and the importance we are giving it across government, we are confident that we will hit the targets on new houses and bring down the homelessness figure at the same time.