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Homelessness in Milton Keynes

Homelessness in Milton Keynes

2018-02-16 
| by Elizabeth. M. | Posted in Milton Keynes News, Youth Journalism

Homelessness has become an increasing problem all over the country, with one out of every 200 people homeless in England. However in Milton Keynes the number is exceptionally high with one out of every 110 inhabitants having no permanent home, or living on the streets. Yet the government has claimed that homelessness has fallen.

 This statement seems ill-supported, by third party research and figures in to the rate of homelessness. While the government claims that 26,852 young people are homeless in Britain, an independent  study from Cambridge University in 2017 claimed that the actual figure was three times this number at 83,000.

The growing amount of tents and homeless shelters in Milton Keynes, makes it clear to those who live in the City that homeless has definitely sharply risen, with many more tents set up under the underpasses. But we are not even in the top 50 areas for high homelessness in Britain making this clearly a nationwide problem. Many not government affiliated projects have started, most notably” The Bus Shelter MK” which launched in 2016 and in April 2017, bought and fitted out a double decker bus to provide homes to rough sleepers in Milton Keynes. However it is not just the number of people on the streets that have increased, MK council has an estimated 800 homeless individuals and families housed in temporary accommodation, while in 2014 we had 140.

So what is the government doing to counteract this? In February 2017, the Homeless Reduction Act passed, meaning that local authorities will now have to intervene sooner with cases of homelessness and help must be given to all, regardless of priority need. A new duty has also been given to public services to notify the local authority of those who are homeless or at risk of becoming so. £61 million has been given to local councils by central government to enforce this act. In 2017, in a interview with MKFM Mark Lancaster and Iain Stewart stated that

“We have always supported organisations that work in this area, we have continuously lobbied for additional funding and we invited the Minister responsible for homelessness to Milton Keynes to see some of the problems for himself” 

By Elizabeth – St Pauls School 

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