Queen's Speech: Housing benefit cut for 18 to 21s could 'spell disaster' for thousands

27 May 2015

The Government has today announced plans to restrict housing benefit for 18-21 year olds.

Responding to the announcement, Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive of Crisis, said:

“The Government’s plan to cut housing benefit for 18-21 year-olds could spell disaster for thousands of young people who cannot live with their parents. At an age when other young people are leaving home to travel, work or study, growing numbers could be facing homelessness and the terrifying prospect of roughing it on the streets.

“For many young people, living with their parents simply isn’t an option. They may be escaping violent or abusive backgrounds; or there may be no room for them in the family home. Housing benefit can be all that stands between them and homelessness. It can mean keeping a roof over their heads whilst they look for work or get their lives back on track. Far from helping them, taking this support away could make it even harder for them to find a job.

“We know that people who become homeless at a young age are likely to go through the experience again and again, leaving them at severe risk of violence, substance abuse and problems with mental and physical health – a tragic waste of young lives.

“Ministers claim they will protect those with nowhere else to go, but the truth is that it’s very difficult to tell which young people are completely out of options until it’s too late. That’s why we’re urging the Government to make sure all those who can’t live with their parents and are at risk of homelessness are protected.”


Notes to editors

For further media information, interviews or to arrange a visit please contact Tom Phillips on 020 7426 3853 or thomas.phillips@crisis.org.uk.

Crisis is the national charity for single homeless people. Our purpose is to end homelessness.

Homelessness is devastating, leaving people vulnerable and isolated.  We believe everyone deserves a place to call home and the chance to live a fulfilled and active life.

Crisis helps people rebuild their lives through housing, health, education and employment services. We work with thousands of homeless people across the UK and have ambitious plans to work with many more. We currently offer services in Birmingham, Coventry, Edinburgh, London, Merseyside, Newcastle, Oxford and South Yorkshire.

We are also determined campaigners, working to prevent people from becoming homeless and to change the way society and government thinks and acts towards homeless people.

< Back

Homelessness ends here

Find out how