Have Your Say policy consultation: summary report (2018)

To develop our plan to end homelessness, Everybody In: How to end homelessness in Great Britain, we needed vital input from organisations working in and around the homelessness sector, and from people with lived experience of homelessness. So we ran Have Your Say – a major policy consultation exercise across Great Britain’s three nations. The results of which fed into the plan.

The policy consultation used a range of methods and sought to:

  • develop our understanding of the most important issues causing homelessness
  • generate a wide range of ideas on how to end homelessness, whether prevention of homelessness, rapid responses to homelessness or sustained solutions
  • prioritise, test and develop, and build consensus on policy solutions to end homelessness
  • promote debate about ways to end homelessness and involve organisations and individuals in the plan.

This report summarises findings from the policy consultation.

Key findings

  • Participants felt that prevention was the most important part of tackling homelessness in the long term, and that councils needed to focus their efforts on proactive prevention measures.
  • At the strategic level, participants suggested there should be a cross-departmental government commitment to homelessness prevention. They cited examples like the UK Rough Sleepers Unit as good ways of getting high level coordination of preventative measures in place.
  • People focused on access to the private rented sector as a quick way to rehouse homeless people, advocating for ‘help to rent’ schemes with attached support and deposit assistance. Noting the unsuitability – and unavailability – of much emergency accommodation, they called for an increase in suitable supply of good quality accommodation for high-risk, high-need individuals.
  • When considering solutions to provide sustained support to people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, participants called for multi-disciplinary, person-centred coordinated support for homeless people, building on the approach of ‘Making Every Adult Matter’ and similar models.
  • When participants were asked to rank and prioritise a few solutions we felt had come out consistently and strongly throughout the process, ‘A joined-up government strategy to end homelessness’, was the most popular in England and Wales. Reflecting priorities elsewhere in the consultation, an increase in the number of affordable homes also scored highly.

Reference:

Hughes, N. (2018) Have Your Say policy consultation: summary report. London: Crisis.