Thank you for contacting me about rough sleeping and the St Mungo’s parliamentary reception.
St Mungo’s does excellent work helping rough sleepers and is a member of the government-backed rough sleeping advisory panel set up in 2018.
Over £1.2 billion has been provided to alleviate homelessness and rough sleeping through to this financial year and a further £422 million was announced for 2020-21.
More dedicated support is needed to help the most entrenched rough sleepers, and a number of measures, such as Housing First pilots and the Rapid Rehousing Pathway, is in place to provide stable accommodation and intensive care. A promising recent study showed that in 2018 alone, the Rough Sleeping Initiative helped reduce the number of rough sleepers by over a third in funded areas, and I am glad that £112 million has been announced for the Initiative to provide 6,000 beds in 270 areas across England in 2020-21.
While the number of rough sleepers declined in 2018 compared to 2017, more needs to be done to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping by ensuring there is enough housing. This is why the Government is boosting the building of more homes of all tenures, including affordable homes and properties for social rent, helping to reach the target of 300,000 new properties each year by the mid-2020s.
I am confident that these measures will reduce homelessness across our country and help end rough sleeping by the end of this Parliament; the upcoming Spending Review will consider the best way forward in funding homelessness prevention and reducing rough sleeping.
Thank you for the invitation to the reception. While I endeavour to attend as many such events as possible, the pressure of Parliamentary business often makes it impossible, unfortunately. Nonetheless, I will continue to monitor all issues to do with rough sleeping and homelessness closely. Please do let me know of any specific issues which you and others would like to be taken further, especially those affecting Calder Valley, and I will endeavour to raise them in the appropriate way.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.
Craig Whittaker MP