Support and protect

Originally posted on September 15 on Inside Edge 2, my blog for Inside Housing

There is good news, bad news and some continuing uncertainty in today’s long-awaited government announcement on the future funding of supported housing.

Originally expected before the summer recess, it finally came in a written statement from work and pensions secretary Damian Green. This follows the deferral of implementation of the LHA cap and 1% rent cut on the sector to allow more research and consultation.

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Doing things differently

Originally posted on December 9 on Inside Edge 2, my blog for Inside Housing

In a country not very far away they are doing things differently. Funding for Supporting People (remember that, England?) is protected. Social Housing Grant (remember that?) is increased.

Wales cannot escape the constraints of Westminster-imposed austerity completely – there is also disappointment over a cut in Homelessness Prevention Grant and an announcement on rents policy is still awaited – but the Draft Budget for 2016/16 shows that it continues to go its own way on housing.

Where Supporting People has been savaged in England following the removal of the ringfence, in Wales research has recently demonstrated the positive impact of the programme on the NHS and social services. And a ‘Let’s Carry on Supporting People’ campaign led by Cymorth Cymru and Community Housing Cymru has been successful. The budget for next year will remain at £124.4m.

Where funding for new social housing has been all but abandoned in England, Wales continues to believe in it. Funding will be increased by £5m in 2016/17 to £68.8m.

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