Issue - meetings
Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds in 2018/19
The Head of Housing Services has submitted a report seeking the City Executive Board’s approval to the allocation of homelessness prevention funds with the purpose of helping meet the objectives of the Homelessness Strategy.
Recommendations:That the City Executive Board resolves to:
1. Approve the allocation of Homelessness Prevention funds to commission homelessness services in 2018/19 as outlined in paragraph 34 of the report;
2. Recommend to City Executive Board and the Chief Finance Officer that any savings from 2017/18 budget allocations for Homelessness Prevention activities are considered to be carried forward at the end of the financial year in order to fund necessary services in 2018/19 and 2019/20 as outlined at paragraphs 27-29 of the report; and
3. Delegate to the Head of Housing in consultation with the portfolio holder the discretion to revise the intended programme if required.
- Appendix A Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds 201819 DRAFT v 0.5, item 171 PDF 50 KB View as DOCX (171/2) 32 KB
- Appendix B Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds 201819 DRAFT v 0.5, item 171 PDF 71 KB View as DOCX (171/3) 39 KB
- Appendix C Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds 201819 DRAFT v 0.5, item 171 PDF 70 KB View as DOCX (171/4) 38 KB
- Appendix D i Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds, item 171 PDF 53 KB View as DOCX (171/5) 18 KB
- Appendix D ii Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds, item 171 PDF 1017 KB
- Appendix E Risk Register Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds, item 171 PDF 39 KB
The Head of Housing Services had submitted a report seeking the City Executive Board’s approval to the allocation of homelessness prevention funds with the purpose of helping meet the objectives of the Homelessness Strategy.
Cllr Rowley, Board Member for Housing, introduced the report, noting the intention of ensuring that the probable savings from the 2018/19 are carried forward for use in support of homelessness services and so continuing to meet the challenges faced by those who are homeless or rough sleepers. He was pleased to be able to highlight an increase of £300k for supported accommodation and that the City’s, current, assessed need is for 150 beds and that in 2018/19 and 2019/20 there will be provision for 170 and 167 respectively.
The Rough Sleeping and Single Homelessness Manager drew attention to the £150k made available to facilitate work the ongoing City Conversation on Rough Sleeping and flowing from the inauguration event on 28 November. This had initiated a programme of work involving collaboration between a wide range of organisations and individuals who have a role to play in helping to address the issues of homelessness and rough sleeping. An interim steering group has been set up to take this programme of work forward which has met twice. The group will be chaired by Jane Cranston, currently High Sheriff of Oxfordshire, and convened and coordinated by the Oxfordshire Community Foundation.
Details about how this additional resource would be used were still being worked up but some funds had already been committed to employing an additional member of staff. This role will focus on communication; ensuring effective co-ordination between the many parts of the Council which provide services which touch upon the lives of those who are homeless or rough sleeping; and assembling and making available high quality data about the issue and related matters (it was hoped that the first quarter of 2018/19 would see the first batch of these data). The impact of the work being done by the Council, commissioned services and other local homelessness organisations was not always visible, with some 300 successful interventions having been made by the Oxford SPOT, the Council’s commissioned outreach team, over the last year and an effective Severe Weather Emergency Programme which had provided nearly 800 nights of accommodation to vulnerable people and given shelter to around 130 people so far over the winter.
She went on to note that rough sleeping had been all but eradicated nationally in 2008 and there is every reason why, with the support of partners, we should hope to achieve this eradicated again. At the same time, it was recognised by all present that the underlying causes of homelessness were, for the most part, a consequence of recent government policies over which the Council had no control and which had a particularly profound effect on the most vulnerable members of the community.
The Housing Strategy and Needs Manager spoke briefly about the Council’s Trailblazer project, as one of just 20 authorities which had received such ... view the full minutes text for item 171
The City Executive Board on 20 March will be asked to approve the allocation of Homelessness Prevention funds to commission homelessness services in 2018/19.
Why is it on the agenda?
This item offers the Panel the opportunity to
consider the report and make recommendations to the City Executive
Report to follow.
Who has been invited to comment?
· Councillor Mike Rowley, Board Member for Housing;
· Stephen Clarke, Head of Housing Services;
· Rachel Lawrence, Rough Sleeping & Single Homelessness Manager.
- Appendix A Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds 201819 DRAFT v 0.5, item 151 PDF 99 KB View as DOCX (151/2) 49 KB
- Appendix B Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds 201819 DRAFT v 0.5, item 151 PDF 71 KB View as DOCX (151/3) 39 KB
- Appendix C Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds 201819 DRAFT v 0.5, item 151 PDF 70 KB View as DOCX (151/4) 38 KB
- Appendix D ii Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds, item 151 PDF 128 KB
- Appendix E Risk Register Allocation of Homelessness Prevention Funds, item 151 PDF 39 KB
The Housing Strategy and Needs Manager introduced the report which was due to be presented to the City Executive Board on 20 March 2018. The report outlined recommendations concerning the allocation of funding for homelessness prevention activities. Key issues for the Panel were highlighted, including:
· The City Council continued to operate pooled budgets with partners.
· Approximately £1.8m for 2018/19 was recommended for allocation towards homelessness prevention.
· Funding was prioritised for securing supported accommodation beds and outreach services.
· Approximately 167 beds were available across all accommodation types, which exceeded the target of 150.
· In addition to bed spaces, there were 10 places of safety spaces available.
In response to questions, it was clarified that Emmaus intended to operate without grant funding from the City Council after two more years. The Housing Strategy and Needs Manager offered to provide more information to one member after the meeting about the funding arrangements associated with Edith Kempson House.
The Panel agreed that the City Conversation event held in November 2017, which brought together various partners to discuss Homelessness, was a positive event. However, there was a need for this momentum to continue, and for actions or proposals to be developed. The Housing Strategy and Needs Manager said that £150,000 had been allocated over two years to support this work. A steering group and a worker had been identified to take this forward. The objective was to have developed a charter for all partners to sign up to by May 2018. The Panel requested that the work of the steering group and the Charter return to the Panel later in 2018.