An additional £60 million should be spent on tackling soaring rates of homelessness in the UK, the Liberal Democrats have urged. London has a particular problem with homelessness.
The funding would help local councils tackle homelessness by providing emergency accommodation and intervening early to prevent people losing their homes.
The Liberal Democrats are also calling for a clampdown on rogue landlords who unfairly evict private tenants, through the Renters’ Rights Bill currently going through Parliament.
This forms part of the party’s comprehensive plan to tackle the root causes of homelessness including:
extending the period someone is defined as threatened with homelessness from 28 to 56 days, to allow earlier interventions to avoid people losing their homes
increasing housebuilding to at least 300,000 new homes a year
restoring housing benefit for 18-21s
ending the Government’s policy of forcing local authorities to sell high value council homes
Tom Brake said:
“Britain is one of the richest places on earth, it is a stain on our nation’s conscience that thousands of people are still sleeping rough in the streets every night.
“It is about time the Government stopped fuelling the housing crisis and started tackling it, by building more homes, restoring housing benefit for young people and clamping down on rogue landlords.”
“I am working hard with Sutton Council to make sure local residents have new affordable homes. The Council has created a council-owned housing development company to build some of the homes Sutton desperately needs. We believe building affordable homes should be a priority and we will continue to make it one in Sutton.”
Notes to Editors
The full Liberal Democrat conference motion on tackling homelessness can be found here:
Tom Brake MP has an Early Day Motion on renters' rights which has attracted cross-party support here- https://www.parliament.uk/edm/2016-17/326