Homelessness: Greater London

Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 11th March 2009.

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Photo of Paul Burstow Paul Burstow Shadow Chief Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the Answer to my hon. Friend Greg Mullholland of 24 February 2009, Hansard, columns 545-56W, on homelessness, if she will provide figures equivalent to those in the table for each London borough; and if she will make a statement.

Photo of Iain Wright Iain Wright Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Communities and Local Government)

Information about English local housing authorities' actions under the homelessness legislation (part 7 of the Housing Act 1996) is collected quarterly at local authority level. Data collected include the number of applicants accepted by local housing authorities as eligible for assistance, unintentionally homeless and in priority need, and therefore owed a main homelessness duty (to secure that suitable accommodation is available). These households are known as 'accepted' households.

In addition, some applicants may be found to be in priority need, but are not accepted as owed a main homelessness duty because they were found to be intentionally homeless. For these cases we do not hold the reason for priority need centrally.

Figures reported by each London local authority, for the last six month, 12 month and two year periods, are provided in a table which has been placed in the Library. These show the number of applicants who were: (a) assessed as being homeless and in priority need; of which those (b) accepted as owed a main homelessness duty; and of which those that were (c) vulnerable though (i) having served in HM forces, (ii) having been on remand or in custody, and (iii) being a former asylum seeker (since April 2000, asylum seekers have been ineligible for assistance under the homelessness legislation, with certain exceptions where an asylum claim had been made prior to 3 April 2000).

However, it is important to note that some applicants who had previously been in the HM forces, on remand or in custody, or are a former asylum seeker, may have been accepted with alternative primary priority needs (for example through having dependent children or being a pregnant woman) and so will not be shown as being priority need for these reasons.

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