Targeted fiscal policy has a crucial role to play in reversing the rising levels of homelessness that we have seen since 2010. Although the recent 2019 Spending Review covered government spending for just additional one year (2020/21), a vital opportunity was missed to begin laying the foundation for a long-term strategic approach to homelessness, capable of delivering on the Government's pledge to eliminate rough sleeping by 2027.
To tackle the widespread human and economic costs of homelessness, The Salvation Army suggests that the Government look to use upcoming opportunities to implement three specific proposals. These proposals include:
- Providing the necessary investment to deliver a substantial number of news homes for social rent, as per plans put forward by organisations including the National Housing Federation, the Chartered Institute of Housing, and Shelter;
- increasing the value of local housing allowance (LHA) rates to at least the 30th percentile of local rents, and uprating the value of LHA rates on an annual basis in line with inflation; and
- introducing a new long-term programme of targeted investment, which local authorities can use to define local approaches to homelessness in a clear and consistent manner.
Read our full analysis.