Over 95,000 households started the new year in temporary accommodation

New government statistics released today show that across England over 95,000 households started the new year in temporary accommodation.

 The statistics also show that from January – March 2021: 

  • There was a 25% increase in the number of single households being placed in temporary accommodation compared to the same time last year. This reflects the work of local authorities to support people rough sleeping into emergency accommodation during the pandemic.
  • The use of B&B accommodation increased by 37% since the same time last year. The majority (88%) of people in this accommodation were single households.
  • Over 50% of households had an identified support need such as mental health problems, physical ill health or drug and alcohol dependencies. Since the last quarter (Oct – Dec 2020) the number of people with a support need has increased by 9%.

Responding to the figures Jon Sparkes, Crisis Chief Executive, said: “These statistics confirm that as we entered a third national lockdown the government was right to instruct councils to redouble efforts to ensure that people were provided with emergency accommodation to shelter from the cold and rising covid cases.

“But we must remember that living in a cramped B&B is only meant to be temporary and until people are helped into a home of their own, we’ve not finished the job. We cannot expect people to be able to rebuild their lives from a single room where they don’t even have the facilities to cook their own meals or do their own washing. With the financial impact of the pandemic continuing to be felt and protections such as the eviction ban now over, we know that many more people will have been pushed closer to the edge and face being placed in expensive temporary accommodation to keep them off the streets unless we drastically change approach.

“Going forward we urgently need a new national Government strategy that will deliver the genuinely affordable homes we need and invests in programmes like Housing First, so that people with complex support needs can get the right help to leave homelessness behind for good. Long lasting recovery for everyone is only possible when we start providing homes not hotel rooms.”