The Lib Dems have drawn up a plan to help the growing number of people who are sleeping rough in Birmingham. Local campaigner Colin Green said “To tackle rough sleeping properly, we need to know the real extent of the problem. Council claims that during their recent count only found 57 rough sleepers across the Birmingham seem too low. Anyone can see this is not the case and doesn’t included the thousands of hidden homeless who are sofa surfing or in temporary accommodation.”
The Lib Dems’ Action Plan
- Conduct a proper count of rough sleepers, working with homeless charities and outreach teams to identify the full extent of the problem
- Develop a co-ordinated approach between all partners working to support rough sleepers, the hidden homeless, as well as those vulnerable to becoming homeless
- Increase the current out-of-hours provision to provide more support and extend support to areas out of the city centre
- Introduce a Housing First policy, where rough sleepers are offered a home and support. Help them become self-sufficient, offering mental health and physical health support
- Reform the Council’s housing provision to provide high standard temporary accommodation rather than forcing people into substandard Bed and Breakfasts.
The Lib Dems are also calling for better and proper regulation of hostels, HMOs and private landlords, improving the standard of homes and giving tenants more security of tenure.
Lib Dem campaigner Ian Garrett said “We will also use the current powers the Council has to bring more empty homes back into use and ensure new properties are built to a high environmental standard and there are a significant number of affordable homes.”