Exeter Citizen | Tackling homelessness

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Tackling homelessness

People can have their say on a raft of initiatives to tackle homelessness in Exeter and Teignbridge.

Exeter City Council and Teignbridge District Council have drawn up a draft Homelessness Strategy to address the issue. Members of the public have a chance to comment on the strategy, with the consultation ending on 28 March.

The City Council is committed to bring rough sleeping to an end and is determined to help those without a roof over their heads to turn their lives around.

Much of the focus of the strategy is the importance of working together with wider statutory and voluntary organisations to address homelessness.

Among the initiatives within the strategy are the following:

  • Launch a referral service for private landlords to help save private rented tenancies when things start to go wrong
  • Develop alternatives to Bed & Breakfast accommodation in an emergency for families and young people.
  • Consider the design of accommodation options for rough sleepers to provide alternatives for those unable to access current provision
  • Review the impact of Safe Sleep winter provision and determine whether a Night Shelter model is a viable option in the local area to provide emergency accommodation.
  • Improve awareness and quality of leaflets and guides about homelessness, and how to get help.
  • Pilot a Housing First  model of accommodation for entrenched rough sleepers to provide options for those who are failed by existing services.
  • Trial the provision of services outside of the Council offices where clients are more likely to engage.

The strategy can be viewed at:
https://www.exeter.gov.uk/council-and-democracy/consultations-and-petitions/joint-exeter-and-teignbridge-homelessness-strategy/

You can see the strategy and fill in a brief survey by following this link to the Teignbridge website www.teignbridge.gov.uk/policy

 

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ECC Media Release | Drop-in event gives people chance to have their say on homelessness

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16 March 2016

Drop-in event gives people chance to have their say on homelessness

Homelessness

People in Exeter can find out what is being done in the city to assist those who are homeless at a drop-in event next week.

The City Council – working in partnership with Teignbridge District Council – has drawn up a Homelessness Strategy for Exeter and Teignbridge.

As part of the Strategy the public are being asked for their views on a raft of initiatives put forward to prevent homelessness.

Cllr Emma Morse, Lead Councillor for Customer Access, said: “This is a great opportunity for people to drop in and see what we have been doing to address homelessness in the city and what plans we have for the future to address this important and complex issue.”

The event takes place at Exeter Guildhall in the High Street, on Thursday 24 March between 10am and 2pm. Everyone is welcome to attend and a number of partners such as St Petrocks and Julian House will be there to explain their role in the city.

Cllr Morse added: “As part of the Strategy we are committed to bring rough sleeping to an end. We are determined to help those without a roof over their head to turn their lives around.”

Much of the focus of the strategy is the importance of working together with wider statutory and voluntary organisations to address homelessness. Among the initiatives within the strategy are the following:

• Launch a referral service for private landlords to help save private rented tenancies when things start to go wrong

• Develop alternatives to bed & breakfast in an emergency for families and young people

• Consider the design of accommodation options for rough sleepers to provide options for those unable to access current provision

• Review the impact of ‘Safe Sleep’ winter provision and determine whether a night shelter model is a viable option in the local area to provide emergency accommodation

• Improve awareness and quality of leaflets and guides about homelessness and how to get help

• Pilot a ‘Housing First’ model of accommodation for entrenched rough sleepers to provide options for those who find it difficult to access and maintain existing services

• Trial a flexible advice service outside of the council offices where clients find it easier to engage

The public consultation ends on 28 March and people can either attend the Guildhall event and leave their feedback or visit the strategy on the City Council’s website at to have their say.

– Ends – 

Briefing on Exeter’s City Council’s Draft Homeless Strategy

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The joint Exeter City and Teignbridge District Council Homelessness Strategy 2016 to 2021 sets out how the two councils, and their partners, will work together to address homelessness over the next five years. The strategy will look at our vision in addressing homelessness and will set out the actions we intend to take to help us reach our goals. It contains a review of the main challenges ahead and highlights key areas of positive work that we are currently delivering.

This is a wide-ranging and ambitious strategy that will require both councils to work together and continue to be open to new ways of tackling issues. . By working together with partners and stakeholders, we can better tackle homelessness and address some of its root causes, whilst maximising resources and delivering a better service.

One of the problems at present there are a number of organisations, agencies, partners and charities working in the area of addressing homelessness.

For example in the area of health provision there are 6 statutory agencies responsible for commissioning in this area, along with numerous grant aiding bodies and over 20 bodies delivering help. This leads to a mosaic of health provision which that strategy looks towards joining up in a more coherent fashion.

So working in partnership is key to the success of the strategy. We will continue to engage with the larger national organisations to provide context, as well as maintain and develop conversations with the smaller local organisations to develop a more joined up set of values and objectives. The strategy aims to develop these values and goals in recognition of national, regional and local policy and proposes a vision for the benefit of all our residents, stakeholders and partners.

The strategy combines both councils’ five year plan to prevent homelessness and improve the experience of those who become homeless locally. It is a call to action to partners and stakeholders to help us deliver, and develop, a more joined-up service to address homelessness in the area.

This strategy looks to deliver our services from a client, or customer, point of view and has been themed to reflect the broad range of work that we do to address homelessness. In this way we hope to break away from a department led approach.

The main themes are:
A Place to Live

This theme reviews the supply of accommodation in the local area and whether it is used effectively to meet local housing need.

2. Access to Services
This theme looks at how we offer services and engage with homeless people.

3. Health and Protection
This theme outlines how health and homelessness impact upon each other as well as the importance of protecting vulnerable people from violence and abuse.

4. Money Matters
This theme considers the financial pressures on local people facing in housing need and the wider homelessness sector

To ensure our strategic aims are linked to local needs they are framed within our themes

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The consultation document goes into more detail,  outlining a proposed action plan which will be reviewed and refreshed annually to keep the strategy relevant.