Tagged: Barnardos

Election Candidates urged to back pledges on homelessness

A North-East think-tank is calling on parliamentary candidates to support a series of pledges to tackle the region’s homelessness crisis.

Research by the North East Homelessness Think Tank (NEHTT) has shown that many more people are at risk of homelessness today than at the time of the last general election in 2010, and that the numbers of people falling victim to homelessness are rising.

These trends are particularly worrying because of recent changes to housing and welfare policies and potential plans for further cuts to public spending.

NEHTT, of which Northumbria University is a founding member, is asking candidates to sign up to its charter to support specific action by the next Government.

NEHTT is a regional group comprising academics, researchers and policy officers.

Key partners include Northumbria University, Youth Homeless North East, Homeless Link, Shelter, Barnardo’s, Northern Housing Consortium, Changing Lives, IPPR North, Oasis Aquila Housing and the NE Regional Homelessness Group, as well as independent specialists.

The pledges are:

*Appropriate housing with adequate support services will be provided for vulnerable people making access to sufficient social housing a priority.

*Housing benefit will be retained for under 25s

*It will be compulsory to find settled accommodation for offenders leaving prison or who are homeless within the community.

*All houses in multiple occupation and B&Bs which cater for homeless people will be inspected and must provide good quality facilities.

The statutory definition of homelessness will be improved by ensuring that all forms of homelessness – rough sleeping, those in temporary accommodation and ‘sofa surfers’ – are officially recorded.

 Adele Irving, research fellow at Northumbria University and one of the founding members of NEHTT said: “We believe that it is vitally important that policymakers not only recognise and take action to address homelessness, but actively campaign and work towards achieving long-term change in the law around homelessness.
 “The charter is a series of pledges which we hope candidates elected on May 7 will support in the next parliament.

“The pledges are based on the knowledge we have, from a wide range of research evidence, about what would make a real difference to address the key issues encountered by many homeless people, and in particular about homelessness amongst single people and under-25s.”

So far, signatories include four Labour candidates and six Green candidates. Further support has also come from two Labour front bench MPs, and two Conservative candidates.

Source – Northern Echo, 10 Apr 2015

Stop Workfare In Its Tracks – Join The Week Of Action 29 March – 6 April 2014

the void

salvation-army-workfare In April George Osborne’s mass workfare scheme will begin.  Unemployed people will be sentenced to 780 hours community work simply for being unable to find a job. Not even lone parents with young children are to be exempt from the scheme which will see so-called charities like Groundwork UK and the Salvation Army paid by the tax payer to force people to work for free.  Part time workers and those currently genuinely volunteering will also face being sent on unpaid work.

Collective action can halt this forced labour scheme in its tracks.  A week of action against workfare has been called beginning on the 29th March.  An escalation in the campaign against unpaid work is vital and there is no better chance than this.  It only takes a few people to get the ball rolling, and protests against organisations using workfare have proved to be effective.  Boycott Workfare can offer…

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