As part of our Home for Good campaign, we issued Freedom of Information requests to 135 local areas to learn more about how funding for their floating support services has changed over the past five years.
Floating support is provided in someone’s home, and helps them to manage their tenancy. People are linked up to a case worker who will work with them to come up with a personalised plan. This might include help to manage their bills or rent, support to access healthcare such as mental health or substance use services, or sometimes just having someone to discuss problems with.
This research found that there has been a dramatic reduction in funding for these services over the past five years. We found that funding for these services decreased by an average of 18% across England over this period. The funding cuts were even starker at a regional level – there was a reduction of 41% across London and 26% across the South East. Tellingly, these are the areas with the highest proportion of people sleeping rough in England.
Our Home for Good campaign is calling on the government to put an end to rough sleeping by ensuring that everyone gets the long-term housing and support they need to rebuild their lives. The Government can make this happen by urgently reviewing the decline in funding for housing-related support services including floating support, and commit to guaranteed funding for local authorities to plan and commission homelessness services. They should also ensure that local homelessness and rough sleeping strategies include a focus on on-going support, including floating support services.
Help us end rough sleeping for good by signing Kevin’s open letter to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government today.