In 2018 the Homelessness Reduction Act came into force, representing the most ambitious reform to homelessness legislation in decades. The Act put new duties on local authorities to take reasonable steps to prevent or relieve a person’s homelessness.
The Government has committed to eliminating rough sleeping in the term of this parliament. In December the Government announced the allocation of £263 million in funding to local authorities designed to support them to deliver services to tackle homelessness.
I was pleased to receive a letter from the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government informing me that Wycombe District Council will receive £500,880 in 2020/21 to give local authorities more control and flexibility in managing homelessness pressures and supporting those at risk. This funding is provided upfront and can be used flexibly as part of the councils’ resourcing to achieve its homelessness strategies.
The Government is also funding many additional rough sleeping services across the country this winter through our £10 million Cold Weather Fund. In recognition of the level of interest in the fund the Government announced a further £3 million available to all local authorities in England.
These announcements underline the Government’s commitment to tackling homelessness and rough sleeping and will ensure local authorities are given the resource they need to make this a reality in Wycombe.