A response from Denis Tully, our CEO, on the update to Everybody In.
Since the Everybody In policy was put in place to bring rough sleepers in off the streets, Emmanuel House has been supporting 40 people in a Nottingham hotel. Nine people have been supported into secure accommodation. The project has been remarkably successful with measurable improvements in residents mental health and their general wellbeing. It is recognised that the hotel accommodation and the quality of support, has provided a place of physical and psychological safety. Such improvements are the basis for reducing the overall costs of ending rough sleeping.
We have been notified that at present, there are no further arrangements to continue the Everybody In arrangements after the present contract ends and while every effort is being made to find secure accommodation for each individual, this ambition is highly unlikely and presents a serious concern.
In the House of Lords debate on homelessness held on 14th May 2020, the Government Minister for Housing Communities and Local Government said that the task force to address homelessness headed by Dame Louise Casey would work to ‘ensure as many people as possible that could be brought in from the streets during this pandemic … are retained in safe and secure accommodation’ and that ‘thousands of rough sleepers continue to receive the physical and mental support that they need’.
I would urge the Government to act with haste and ensure local authorities have the resources they need to follow through on this commitment. There is particular concern for people who are not entitled to any statutory help beyond advice and can only receive support from charities who do not have the resources to provide what is necessary; safe and secure accommodation. In addition, Nottingham has a special problem in that it has a shortage of accommodation anyway, making it an additional challenge to move people out of homelessness.
This is a unique opportunity for the Government to take a huge step towards achieving its target of ending rough sleeping by 2027. Failure to follow through at this point will see a yet unprecedented rise in homelessness and would be a betrayal of its own commitment, local communities and of homeless people themselves.