Letter to Editor: Tories defend role in reducing homelessness in Harlow

Politics / Fri 26th Nov 2021 at 03:05pm

Dear Sir,

Cllr Wilkinson and I tend to agree on most housing and homelessness issues, and I am glad he notes the support provided by this government to reduce homelessness and rough sleeping.

Just for the record, Harlow received a total of £1,065,643 in grants this year1 and 2. It is significant that despite Harlow being smaller than our neighbouring councils, only half that sum (£540,568) went to East Herts council, and £685,122 to Epping Forest. Less than a quarter was awarded to Uttlesford council (£232,337).

In comparison, in 2010/11, the last year of a Labour Government, the council received a total £89,000 in Homelessness Grant3.

Much of the grant is based on the splendid work of Streets2Homes over the years in providing support to rough sleepers and their holistic approach in helping them maintain their homes. (Declaration of interest, I was chairman of S2H until a few years ago).

The lobbying by our MP of the responsible departments to highlight this work reminds the decision makers of the successful partnership between the council and the charitable sector to achieve no one sleeping rough last month, compared with 24 in 2017.

The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 placed additional burdens on local authorities which was recognised with what has become the Homeless Prevention Grant1. There is also the Rough Sleepers Initiative to support getting people off the streets, both of which were introduced by the Conservative Government.

The Conservatives have made reducing rough sleeping and homelessness a major priority. Harlow has further benefitted from that support with an active and caring Conservative MP seeking recognition for the excellent joint working on the ground to help the most vulnerable regain a home and their dignity.

Simon Carter (Cllr)

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5 Comments for Letter to Editor: Tories defend role in reducing homelessness in Harlow:

2021-11-26 16:27:47

As a private landlord I have had a very positive experience with Colchester Borough Homes were the arms reach company provides a conduit between private landlords and tenants. Does Harlow have a similar set up?

Simon Carter
2021-11-26 21:11:36

As mentioned in the letter, Harlow Council works very closely with Streets2Homes, an established homeless charity which has built up its own very effective relationships with private sector landlords, and helped the council establish its own network. So both the statutory and third sectors work closely with their tenants/clients to help them sustain their tenancies and find permanent accommodation. Streets2Homes provide an holistic approach to supporting their clients such as training, job applications and benefits, along with health issues - www.streets2homes.co.uk

Keely Nickolds
2021-11-26 22:44:49

Hi Simon I'm the owner of Nickolds Property Management, you will be pleased to know we have housed over 1900 tenants in harlow since the pandemic started in March 2020 We are providing support to our tenants and have 2 Tenancy support officers who offer ongoing support and help them maintain their tenancies so they are not street homeless Would love to show you the work and impact we have had on the harlow community We work alongside organisations to help people who need it

2021-11-26 22:50:25

Can the politicians stop crowing about reducing the numbers of the homeless and tackle the causes especially whilst people are dying in the Channel, are trapped on the borders of Poland and the middle east is such a mess. Much a result of the consequences of the empires and decisions of the European powers. In the name of common humanity it's time to stop spats with the French and other nations to take responsibility together for the consequences of Empires. The uk could play a major role in this and start by restoring the level of overseas aid.

2021-11-30 13:43:40

Get them off the street it’s freezing out there

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