£100m homeless plan '˜not enough' says Fareham charity CEO

THE government's plan to invest £100m into ending homelessness has been met with mixed reactions.

Monday, 13th August 2018, 6:19 pm
Updated Sunday, 2nd September 2018, 10:05 pm
The Government's 100m homeless plan is not enough, says charity CEO. Picture: Victoria Jones/PA

Charities and city leaders have welcomed the proposals but said they do not do enough to help rough sleepers and the time-frame was too long.

Housing secretary James Brokenshire announced the plan would look to half the number of people living on the streets by the end of the administration and end it all together by 2027.

He also admitted none of the £100m was new money. Half is from the current housing budget while the other £50m had been previously announced.

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Steve Benson, chief executive of charity Two Saints based in Fareham, said: '˜We welcome the government's recognition that they need to act to end rough sleeping.

'˜But we are concerned it isn't more ambitious. They are looking to end rough sleeping in 10 years but this could be achieved much sooner.

'˜It is disappointing as well the government isn't using new money for this plan.'

In yesterday's announcement, Mr Brockenshire said government will have a three-pronged approach to tackling rough sleeping including prevention, intervening to help people already on the streets get support and helping people rebuild their lives.

Councillor Donna Jones, leader of the city's Tory party, said: '˜Under the Conservatives' control, we found the money to open a homeless shelter in Portsmouth all year round, ensuring there were enough beds for everyone.

'˜But in my experience it isn't a lack of beds or support that prevent someone from having a permanent home of their own, in many cases it's a mental health issue.

'˜I hope the government recognises the need for support in both acute and community mental health to prevent people becoming homeless in the first place.'

Portsmouth South Labour MP Stephen Morgan dismissed the plan. He said: '˜This 'strategy' is no such thing. With the secretary of state appearing to confirm the supposed £100m is really just clever accounting.

'˜It's little wonder his department has estimated it will be a decade before it can fix rough sleeping.'