On 10th January 2018 the Bishop ofSt Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, received a written answer to two questions on rough sleeping in London by care leavers and ex-offenders:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans:
(i) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the finding of the APPG on Homelessness that, between January and March, 11 per cent of rough sleepers in London were care leavers; and what assessment they have made of the quality of housing support provision for care leavers. HL4372
(ii) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the finding of the APPG on Homelessness that, between January and March, 37 per cent of rough sleepers in London had experience of being in prison; and what assessment they have made of housing support provision for ex-offenders.
Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth: One person sleeping rough is one too many and this Government is determined to do something about this.
At Autumn Budget 2017, the Government announced £28 million of funding to pilot the Housing First approach for some of the country’s most entrenched rough sleepers. We also announced that we will be providing £20 million of additional funding for schemes that will enable better access to the private rented sector for those who are homeless or sleeping rough or at risk, including specialist groups such as care leavers and ex-offenders. We will be engaging with relevant departments as we develop these proposals.
This action builds on wider action that we have taken to achieve our manifesto commitment of halving rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminating it altogether by 2027. This includes:
- establishing the Rough Sleeping and Homelessness Reduction Taskforce, to drive forward the implementation of a cross-Government strategy;
- allocating over £1 billion to prevent homelessness and rough sleeping through to 2020; and
- implementing the most ambitious legislative reform in this area in decades, the Homelessness Reduction Act, which will mean people will receive the help they need sooner.