Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 14th July 2016
Title of Item/Report
Accommodation for Care Leavers and Homeless Young People
Record of the Decision
Consideration was given to a report on the accommodation to care leavers and homeless young people.

There was a legal requirement for the Council to provide suitable accommodation to care leavers and homeless young people aged 16 and 17. The Council commissions a range of housing related support for a variety of different client groups. It was acknowledged that this could be expanded and more effectively targeted in order to better meet the needs of care leavers and homeless young people in the Borough. The report updated Members on both the progress made to date and outlined the further actions proposed in order to address this critical issue.

The report also considered the likely impact of proposed Government welfare and social housing policy reforms on all young people in the Borough.

RESOLVED that

1. The proposals detailed in the report (paragraphs 6 - 9) be endorsed which were aimed at maximising the availability of suitable accommodation for care leavers and homeless young people in the borough as summarised below:

The on-going review of Housing Related Support (HRS) provided an opportunity to address the current shortage of supported accommodation for care leavers and homeless young people:

- Stage 1: a review of all existing service contracts had been undertaken. Specifically in relation to care leavers and homeless young people contract variations for appropriate services had specified that providers would (i) be required to allow access to those aged 16years+ and (ii) all future vacancies must be considered by the Youth Accommodation Panel or Housing Gateway Service. This was now in operation.

- Stage 2: would include a formal procurement exercise with newly commissioned services/contracts in place for 2017/18. Relevant new contracts would include the revisions detailed above and therefore facilitate on-going access to accommodation services.

- The immediate impact of the actions had been to expand the range of accommodation services available to care leavers and homeless young people, this in turn would support the move-on of young people from temporary supported accommodation to independent living.

2. Cabinet receive future reports detailing how the accommodation needs of care leavers and homeless young people continue to be addressed (specifically in relation to the Housing Related Support review) and updates on the broader implications of Government welfare and social housing policy on all young people in our Borough.
Reasons for the Decision
The Council has a legal duty to provide suitable accommodation for care leavers and homeless young people aged 16 and 17 in the borough.

As a responsible corporate parent, the council was also committed to ensuring that looked after young people and care leavers in the borough are provided with suitable accommodation and appropriate support as they prepare for the transition to independent living.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
None
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
Cllr Steve Nelson declared a personal non prejudicial interest in the Agenda Item 10 - Accommodation Care Leavers and Homeless Young People as he was a Board Member on Thirteen Group.
Details of any Dispensations
N/A
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Midnight, 25th July 2016
Attachment

Date of Publication: 19 July 2016


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