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New figures show impact of Government interventions on homelessness at start of pandemic – Crisis response

In March, the Government introduced emergency response measures to ban evictions and to bring everyone sleeping rough into safe accommodation where they could self-isolate, like hotels, under the Everyone In scheme.

Today (Thursday 29 October), new Government statistics for April to June 2020 show the impact of these measures.

  • 14% increase in the number of people living in temporary accommodation, with a 60% increase in people living in B&Bs since the same period last year, which include the hotels provided under the Everyone In scheme
  • 63,750 households were owed a homelessness duty down by 11% from the same time last year caused by a drop in households at risk of homelessness needing support
  • The number of people who were at risk or became homeless from the private rented sector has dropped 48% from the same time last year.
  • The number of people at risk of becoming homeless as a result of a Section 21 notice has dropped by 69% from the same time last year.

Months on, with a second spike in coronavirus cases as we approach winter and the financial impact of the pandemic being felt, Crisis warns that the Government must take urgent action to protect people at risk of homelessness.

Jon Sparkes, chief executive of Crisis, said: “These figures serve as a reminder of how beneficial the measures put in place at the start of the pandemic, such as the ban on evictions and the Everyone In scheme, were in protecting people from the sharp edge of homelessness. However, these interventions were only temporary and with the economic impact of the pandemic really beginning to bite, we are starting to see this progress unravel. More and more people are struggling to make ends meet as jobs are lost, hours cut, and wages reduced.

“As winter approaches and the risk of people being pushed into homelessness increases, Government must act now. We need to see additional funding for local authorities, so they can prevent homelessness from happening in the first place and support renters who may have fallen into arrears because of the economic pressures of the outbreak. We also need to see a longer-term plan to give councils the resources to provide safe and settled housing for people who are homeless and are stuck in temporary accommodation, like B&Bs and hostels.”

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Notes to Editor

Data available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/statutory-homelessness-in-england-april-to-june-2020