Attendees and apologies
Chair: Jon Sparkes (CEO, Crisis)
- Lorraine McGrath (Simon Community/Streetwork)
- John Mills (Fife Council & ALACHO)
- Maggie Brunjes (GHN)
- Shona Stephen (Queens Cross Housing Association)
- Josh Littlejohn (Social Bite)
- Russell Barr (Church of Scotland)
- Suzanne Fitzpatrick (Heriot-Watt University)
- David Duke (Street Soccer)
- Lynn McMath (Crisis)
- Catriona MacKean (Head of Homelessness, SG Better Homes Division)
- Graham Thomson (SG Supported Accommodation Team Leader)
- Stephen O’Connor (SG Homelessness Team)
- Anna Evans (The Indigo House Group)
- Susanne Millar (GCHSCP), Mike Dailly (Govan Law Centre)
Items and actions
Jon Sparkes welcomed members to the tenth meeting of the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Group and also welcomed Anna Evans who would report to the Action Group with an update on the research work on a Rapid Rehousing Transition Plan.
Jon highlighted that the immediate and primary focus for this meeting would be to finalise the question 3 recommendations on “How can we transform the use of temporary accommodation?” in advance of submitting the Action Group’s proposals to the Scottish Government by the end of May.
2. Question 3 –Temporary Accommodation research and consultancy work – update from Anna Evans
Jon invited Anna Evans (The Indigo House Group) to update the Action Group on the interim findings of the commissioned research work on a Rapid Rehousing Transition Plan. Anna reported on the interim findings from the project’s market area analysis, legislative and culture review. As part of the work, all 32 local authorities and partners were consulted on how they would be able to move to a rapid rehousing approach within five years. A national overview of market analysis revealed a number of supply, access and other challenges that will need addressed at national and local level, parallel with the transition to rapid rehousing, to ensure success of local transition plans. The review had highlighted that around 33% of social housing lets went to homeless households and there was very low use of private rented sector housing for the statutory homeless. While applications for social housing were on a gradual decrease, demand for temporary accommodation was still increasing in some markets and nationally demand would keep on increasing on current demand/supply rates. The work had found that the policies and processes of moving homeless households through the system in some areas was equally as important as access to new and existing housing supply. The presentation was followed by an active discussion about the findings and the implications for ensuring the Group’s recommendations for a rapid rehousing transition plan can be fully achieved and supported. The Group also discussed the next steps of the project to develop the practical tools to assist local authorities and partners in the development of the rapid rehousing transition plans and it was agreed that Anna would present on this at the next meeting of the Action Group.
ACTION: Anna to attend the Action Group meeting on 24 May to provide an update on the development of the practical tools for rapid rehousing transition plans
3. Question 3 – Recommendations on temporary accommodation
Jon invited the Action Group to consider the recommendations the Group would submit to the Scottish Government for question 3 recommendations on “How can we transform the use of temporary accommodation? Jon asked the Group to consider a draft report on the recommendations which reflected the outcome of the work by workstreams up to and in the interim since the Action Group’s meeting on 26 April. The Action Group had a detailed discussion and agreed that the Group had reached agreement on recommendations based around:
- Reducing the need for temporary accommodation in the first place through effective prevention and re-housing, and improving outflow or move-on
- Where temporary accommodation is required, ensuring the support that those people using temporary accommodation need is in place right from ‘Day 1’ and is in place for as long as is required – including when they are in mainstream settled accommodation if that is what they need
- Where temporary accommodation is required, ensuring it is of a nature, quality, standard and timescale that fits the needs and choices of the households involved, and that these aspects of temporary accommodation are effectively regulated
The Action Group also received an update from John Mills on the workstream looking at recommendations around ensuring that funding arrangements do not act as a barrier to meeting the needs of households. The Group had a detailed discussion and agreed that the workstream would develop the funding recommendations further for consideration and sign-off at the next meeting of the Action Group.
In the meantime, it was agreed that Jon would update the draft report for the other Q3 recommendations to reflect the discussion and circulate to the Group for final agreement and sign-off prior to submitting the recommendations to the Scottish Government.
ACTION: John to update the funding recommendations to reflect the discussion of the Action Group and submit to the Group for consideration and sign-off at the next meeting on 24 May
ACTION: Jon to update and circulate the draft report on Q3 recommendations to the Action Group for final comments prior to submitting to the Scottish Government
4. Question 4 – Brainstorm and identify workstreams
The Action Group agreed to consider this item at an extended workshop style meeting of the Group on 24 May.
Next meeting – 24 May 2018. The Action Group agreed that this would be an extended/all-day meeting.