Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 13th March 2002.

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Photo of Tony Blair Tony Blair Prime Minister 2:30 pm, 13th March 2002

I am sure that what my hon. Friend says about the problems of housing in London and elsewhere is true. It is for that reason that we have been seeking to increase investment. In particular, the starter homes initiatives for staff such as teachers, police officers and nurses in London will ensure that at least hundreds of people in those professions get the chance of a decent home in London, which they need to go to work.

As for homelessness more generally, my hon. Friend will know that we have cut the number of rough sleepers, but we are well aware of the fact that bed-and-breakfast accommodation is not the right accommodation—medium or long term—so we are looking urgently at how we manage to increase the provision of housing and reduce the reliance on bed-and-breakfast accommodation.