Today, I am announcing provisional allocations of up to £112 million for a third year of Rough Sleeping Initiative and Rapid Rehousing Pathway funding. This funding covers around 270 local authorities in England, including those that were part of joint funding proposals and represents an uplift of £26 million on last year’s Rough Sleeping Initiative and Rapid Rehousing Pathway funding.
We announced the Rough Sleeping Initiative in March 2018 to make an immediate impact on rough sleeping. Our impact evaluation of the initiative (published September 2019) demonstrated that it drove the first national reduction in rough sleeping in almost a decade. The analysis demonstrated a 32% net reduction in the number of rough sleepers, compared to what the level would have been had the initiative not been in place.
To build on the Rough Sleeping Initiative, we launched the Rapid Rehousing Pathway. This approach includes funding for Somewhere Safe to Stay hubs, which provide warm and dry shelter, rapid assessment, and support to people who are already, or at risk of, sleeping rough; specialist Navigators, who act as a single point of contact to support people from the streets into settled accommodation; the establishment of Local Lettings Agencies to source, identify, or provide homes and advice for rough sleepers or those at risk; and funding for Supported Lettings initiatives, which will provide flexible support to help individuals sustain their tenancies.
For the next financial year we have combined the Rough Sleeping Initiative and Rapid Rehousing Pathway to form one consolidated funding pot for 2020/21, to simplify the process for local authorities. We have drawn on learnings from both programmes to optimise the effectiveness of next year’s funding, which was open to all local authorities in England. Since October 2019 our expert adviser teams have worked intensively with local authorities to coproduce plans to further reduce rough sleeping.
A full list of the areas funded is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/rough-sleeping-initiative-2020-to-2021-funding-allocations
With the funding I have announced today, local areas will be able to enhance services that connect people with the right support and sustainable housing to move them swiftly away from the street and facilitate their recovery. This important work is part of delivering on the commitment made in the government manifesto to end rough sleeping by the end of this parliament.
This statement has also been made in the House of Lords