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Government announces support for rough sleepers over winter

Rough sleepers will be provided with safe and warm accommodation this winter through an extra £66m of funding from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC).

The funding will also provide extra support including counselling and rehab and detox services to help rough sleepers with drug and alcohol dependency.

More than 60 councils have been allocated a share of the up to £52m Drug and Alcohol Treatment Grant to provide specialist services for rough sleepers, alongside voluntary, faith and community groups being awarded grants from the £3.8m Homelessness Transformation Fund to turn shared accommodation into Covid-19 secure self-contained accommodation for rough sleepers.

Additionally, up to 3,500 rough sleepers will be provided with emergency accommodation, with areas most in need of support invited to bid for funding from the £10m Winter Pressures Fund.

The scheme will build on the success of the Everyone In initiative, which supported 37,000 vulnerable people into longer term accommodation during the pandemic.

The government hopes that the new funding announcement will help them to deliver their commitment to end rough sleeping by 2024.

person sitting beside building looking straight to the street at golden hour

Minister for rough sleeping and housing, Eddie Hughes MP, said: ‘Rough sleepers are some of the most vulnerable people in our society and we must help them off the streets and end the plight of rough sleeping once and for all.

‘That means providing somewhere safe and warm for them to stay, and this funding will be a lifeline for thousands as the temperature drops this winter. We are also helping those trapped in drug and alcohol addiction and giving them the stability they need to turn their lives around.’

Minister for care, Gillian Keegan, added: ‘It’s crucial we support people experiencing homelessness – particularly those wanting to break the cycle of addiction.

‘This additional funding will not only help those personally fighting drug and alcohol addiction, but it will also benefit their friends, families and the communities who are also impacted by the consequences of substance misuse.

‘More widely, we continue to support people without a home, including around access to vaccines throughout the pandemic, and recently announcing £16 million for pilot projects to support homeless people being discharged from hospital.’

In related news, low-income households that have been struggling due to the impact of the pandemic will benefit from a £65m support package, announced by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

Photo by Ev

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