Peter Aldous calls for long-term funding commitments and supported accommodation for those facing mental health challenges in order to reduce homelessness.
We are spending more than £1.2 billion to 2020 to reduce homelessness. We have implemented the most ambitious legislative reform in decades, the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017; we are taking immediate action to begin to reduce the number of people on the street through the rough sleeping initiative; and last summer, we published our rough sleeping strategy.
Schemes such as Somewhere Safe To Stay are having success, but will the Minister take on board the feedback that I am receiving from Access Community Trust, Lowestoft Rising and the Salvation Army? They say that to eliminate homelessness, short-term one-year pilots must be turned into longer-term funding commitments and supported accommodation must be provided for those facing mental health challenges.
My hon. Friend is a doughty fighter for his constituency, and he never shies away from meeting the right sort of people to make a difference in his community. I have met the Salvation Army and several of the other bodies that he mentioned, and he is quite right. I recognise the importance of giving local areas security around funding, and that remains a priority for the Government. Decisions about the future of homelessness funding will be made at the spending review later this year. We were clear in the rough sleeping strategy that accommodation, alongside the right support for people with needs, is vital. That is why we are funding a range of initiatives, including the rapid rehousing pathway, through which we directly fund almost 140 areas.
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