Homeless Link responds to the Government’s new rough sleeping initiative

Friday, 30 March 2018 - 9:00am

Rick Henderson, Chief Executive of Homeless Link, the national membership organisation for homelessness services in England comments.

Older homeless man
Photography by Elizabeth Pennington

“We welcome the Government’s announcement today of a new Rough Sleeping Team, alongside a £30million fund for 2018/19 targeted at local authorities with high levels of rough sleeping. Decisive action at a national and local level, involving strong partnerships with voluntary and statutory organisations, and based on robust evidence and effective interventions, will be key to fulfilling the commitment to eliminate rough sleeping by 2027.

“As members of the Government’s Rough Sleeping Advisory Group, we are supporting the development of a national rough sleeping strategy and this new initiative is a positive start. We are keen that the national strategy will recognise the expertise of the voluntary sector and set out a coordinated action plan that will guarantee adequate investment and successfully end rough sleeping.

“However, to eliminate rough sleeping for good, the Government needs to ensure that the national strategy prioritises tackling the structural causes of the problem, including the housing crisis and the welfare safety net. Poverty, lack of suitable, low-cost housing and the growing gap between benefit levels and rents are among the critical issues that need addressing, and Homeless Link is determined that this focus is not lost.”

Talk To Us

Rick Henderson

Rick Henderson

Chief executive

Rick is the CEO of Homeless Link and was appointed to that role in July 2012. He is a member of the government’s National Rough Sleeping Advisory Panel and the London Mayor’s Rough Sleeping Task Group. 

Twitter: @rickviews