One in three people have been affected by homelessness

  • One in three people living in Britain have either experienced homelessness or know someone who has, according to new research by Homeless Link.

    Findings by umbrella body Homeless Link show that the number of homeless households has risen by 33% since 2010 and eight out of ten people believe that councils should be doing more to help people.

    Whilst homelessness is growing, the amount of support available to these people is decreasing. Since 2010, 133 homeless projects have been closed, over 4,000 bed spaces have been lost and the number of full-time staff in the sector has fallen by 16% while nearly half of homeless services last year reported an average fall in investment of 17%, reports 24dash.

    The research suggests that investment in services could fall even further. In the last six months councils have reported cuts of 25-40% to housing-related support budgets.

    Homeless Link's data has found that 72% have mental health issues, 56% have long term physical health needs and only 6% are in employment.

    The charity have now launched a campaign named ‘Pay it Forward' which calls on councillors to back continued investment in homeless prevention and support in 2014.

    Rick Henderson, Homeless Link CEO, said: "These figures highlight how common the experience of being without a home really is and the impact homelessness has on individuals and communities. Homelessness services play a vital role in helping people rebuild their lives, but can only do so if they continue to receive sustainable long-term funding.

    "Whilst we understand the pressure councils are under, we also know that investment in tackling homelessness is in everyone's interest and is backed by the public. Homeless Link is calling for all councils to commit to supporting the innovative projects throughout the country that change lives and benefit society every day."

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