SIX councils in North Wales have got together to launch a regional homelessness strategy in partnership with the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) Cymru.
The strategy, People, Homes & Services, sets out a coordinated approach to tackling homelessness in all its forms, whether it be rough sleeping, youth homelessness, or those living in temporary accommodation and waiting on a social housing waiting list.
CIH Cymru said the strategy is underpinned by a regional action plan as well as six individual action plans from each local authority.
Wrexham County Borough Council and the county councils of Conwy, Debighshire, Gwynedd, Flintshire, and Isle of Anglesey have all signed up to the strategy,
In a joint statement the councils’ leads on housing and homelessness said: “Fundamentally, this strategy recognises that homelessness, and the issues that cause it, has no regard for local authority boundaries and that if we are really going address this issue, then all six councils need to work together to join up data, services and solutions.
“The Welsh Government has requested that councils work more closely together and we, as the leads on homelessness in our respective authorities, recognise that tackling homelessness is an area where collaboration will work for the benefit of all our communities across the region.
“This document sets out a strategy based on working together to reach the overarching goal – eradicating homelessness in North Wales. The strategy has been developed within the context of local homelessness reviews and strategies and will inform commissioning plans and funding priorities for each local authority.”
CIH Cymru director Matt Dicks added: “The shortage of supply is a big contributing factor to people presenting as homeless, whether they are rough sleepers, those on social housing waiting lists, or those sleeping on a friend’s sofa without any prospect of any affordable permanent accommodation.
“But all the evidence from the individual homelessness reviews, carried out by the six North Wales local authorities to inform this strategy, suggests a more complex explanation as to why so many are sleeping rough or waiting to be housed.
“It is about the specific groups of people in need of support, the type of homes we need to provide them with and the services that allow them to live sustainably in those homes.”
The full strategy document can be found HERE.