We take the issue of rough sleeping extremely seriously. This sets out the range of work we do to help tackle the issue.
Homelessness in Oxford takes many forms: from the visible rough sleepers on our streets, to the invisible families that have fallen on hard times. People who experience homelessness are often affected by a wide range of issues, including relationship breakup, domestic violence, debt, mental health issues, drug and alcohol issues, and changes to benefits.
Over recent years the Government has cut our £9m annual grant to nothing. Despite this challenging financial situation, we are doing our best to support everyone who is at risk of or becomes homeless.
Over the last two years we have:
- maintained our £1.4m of annual grants to Oxford’s homeless charities, funding a wide range of support services and accommodation. This will increase to £1.8m a year in 2018/19
- committed £1.5m to keep the Simon House hostel open in the face of closure and build a brand new facility for rough sleepers with complex needs in Cowley
- secured £500,000 of Government funding to enhance support for rough sleepers during the winter 2018/19
- secured £790,000 of Government funding to help vulnerable single adults under the age of 35, and households at risk of homelessness
- allocated £15m to buy homes for otherwise homeless Oxford families. We have added a further £5m to this fund In the 2018/19 budget
- alongside partners, prevented 1,159 households from becoming homeless in 2017/18