Leading homelessness charity St Mungo’s has welcomed the Government’s latest Levelling Up agenda which commits to spreading opportunity and prosperity to all parts of the UK.
Unveiled by Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove today (2 February), the strategy will take until 2030 and aims to devolve power from Whitehall to local leaders.
The Levelling Up White Paper also seeks to improve areas pertinent to the homelessness sector such as housing, health disparity and workforce skills.
Among the agenda include specific commitments to:
- offer a ‘London-style’ devolution of power and create more regional mayors
- abolish Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 (‘no fault’ evictions) and build more affordable social housing
- tackle the core drivers of health inequalities and narrow the gap in Healthy Life Expectancy (HLE)
- upskill the workforce by increasing the number of people successfully completing high-quality skills training
- build on investment from the 10-year Drugs Strategy to work intensively with local authorities in the most affected areas
St Mungo’s Chief Executive Steve Douglas CBE said: “It is encouraging to see the Government proposing to distribute power more locally through their Levelling Up agenda. As seen through the work of the Kerslake Commission, the devolution of power enables leaders to determine and tailor the resources that are right for their own communities.
“We are also pleased that the agenda responds to a number of recommendations set out in the Kerslake report, particularly ending the use of ‘no fault’ evictions, building more homes, reducing health disparity and developing workforce skills.
“Achieving these ambitions will make a real difference to the lives of so many people who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness.
“We look forward to seeing the Government implement these missions quickly, as they offer a powerful contribution to our shared commitment to ending homelessness and rough sleeping for good.”
The Kerslake Commission will be convening again in March to ensure that the recommendations set forth in the report are continually progressed and developed.