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New funding to combat homelessness in Guildford

3 minute read
New funding to combat homelessness in Guildford

Published at 12:39pm 21st February 2018.

Guildford Borough Council is to receive nearly half a million pounds of additional funding to help manage homelessness.

At a meeting last night the Council Executive agreed new measures to support the introduction of the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 which comes into force on Tuesday 3 April.

A total of £460,000 will be provided by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local government over three years to aid the Council in addressing issues of homelessness.

Cllr Philip Brooker, Lead Councillor for Housing and Environment said: “The new Act in April provides a real opportunity for us to help more people across the borough who are at risk of homelessness.

“Through our current strategy the Council has already been successful in the prevention of homelessness and we will continue to provide help for people at a difficult time for them.”

Since 2003 the Council has had its own strategy to manage homelessness across the borough, focusing on tackling the issues of single homelessness and rough sleeping, managing the impact of welfare reform, as well as improving access to affordable housing.

Cllr Brooker added: "We recognise that one of the key issues we face in our borough is the shortage of affordable accommodation.

“In conjunction with our partner charitable organisations - Number Five Night shelter, Guildford Action, Riverside Housing and Support, Home Group and the Salvation Army Housing Association, along with other voluntary sector organisations, housing associations and our supportive private landlords, we are well placed to meet the challenges that the new legislation brings."

The new Act extends the Council’s obligations to a wider set of circumstances, and in some cases, for longer.

Anyone with a housing problem that potentially increases the risk of them losing their home within a 56 day time-frame can now ask for Council assistance.

The Council said that at this stage they cannot fully determine the additional demands that this might place on their Housing Assessment Team, but in order to manage the demand have conducted a staffing review, provided training and will introduced new software to help manage case-loads.

For more information on homelessness visit Guildford Borough Council or the 'Have a heart, give smart' campaign.

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