St Albans City and District Council reviews plans for tackling homelessness

St Albans & Harpenden Review: Council reviews plans for tackling homelessness Council reviews plans for tackling homelessness

St Albans City and District Council’s homelessness strategy is under review.

The council’s approach to preventing and resolving homelessness in the District will be considered by the cabinet next Tuesday (July 23).

The draft strategy, which sets out how the council will help those at risk of homelessness keep their homes or find new ones, replaces an existing strategy which expires this month.

The strategy covers the next three years.

The key points that have been identified for action are:

• Crisis prevention. The aim is to reduce the number of emergency cases of people who have nowhere to stay at night.

• Making better use of the private sector to create a greater supply of housing for homeless people. This will help reduce pressure on the demand for social housing owned by the council and housing associations.

• Making every contact count so people in housing need, in particular the homeless, are provided with useful advice, such as the availability of rent deposit schemes.

• Welfare reform. We will be working with other agencies to provide a co-ordinated response to changes in welfare support, including the introduction of universal credit.

Councillor Brian Ellis, portfolio holder for housing at the council, said: "I’m proud of our record of preventing homelessness and supporting those who find themselves homeless.

"But we need to be responsive to local trends in homelessness. The draft strategy sets out key priorities for the next three years.

"It will be an evolving document that is based on the needs of people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness."

If you are worried about losing your home, information on housing options and possible sources of help are available on the council’s website here, or for more information about the homelessness strategy visit the council’s website here.

A webcast of the cabinet meeting on July 23 can be watched at http://www.stalbans.public-i.tv/core/

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