Liverpool City Council has been awarded more than £280,000 to help reduce the number of rough sleepers on the city’s streets.
The money, awarded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), will fund new accommodation places for up to 40 rough sleepers, as well as access to a range of services.
It will also be used to recruit five new members of support staff to work with rough sleepers to help them thrive in their new housing and ensure they can access other services to meet their needs. The announcement comes in the wake of news that the council’s temporary winter night shelter, Labre House, has been granted planning permission to open as a full-time facility for the next 15 months.
Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr Lynnie Hinnigan, said: “Since we opened Labre House in November, the number of people sleeping rough on the streets has already reduced. However there are around 25 people who do not yet feel able to take advantage of the support offered or who move in and out of temporary accommodation. There is also a small number of people using Labre House who have no access to public funds.”
“The new funding will help these groups by looking at their needs, identifying personalised accommodation and helping them to begin living more settled lives.”
The city council and its partners applied for the funding earlier this year. It will provide rent payments and fund the purchase of furniture and white goods to help rough sleepers establish their homes. It will also provide greater access to mental health services, rehabilitation and other treatments along with help and advice with financial issues. It will be in addition to the range of over 700 units of temporary accommodation which the council already funds.
If all goes according to plan, the new measures will be in place by the Autumn to prevent people from sleeping rough in the cold weather.
Cllr Hinnigan added: “Despite being under severe financial pressure, the council and its partners already provides a broad range of support for people in our city who find themselves in dire circumstances.”
“This funding will go to further support the services we offer with the ultimate aim of encouraging people off the streets and into accommodation for good. There is always room inside for anyone who needs it. We cannot make people come in off the streets and engage with us but we can make it as easy as possible for them to access the services they need once they have.”
Liverpool City Council’s Always Room Inside campaign means no-one has to sleep on the streets of the city. If you have concerns about someone who is sleeping rough, you can call the helpline number: 0300 123 2041.