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Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 18th January 2011.

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Photo of Amber Rudd Amber Rudd Conservative, Hastings and Rye

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what his most recent estimate is of the number of people who are homeless in (a) England, (b) East Sussex and (c) Hastings and Rye constituency.

Photo of Grant Shapps Grant Shapps The Minister for Housing

Information about local authorities' discharge of their duties under homelessness legislation is collected on quarterly P1E returns. Summary information about English local housing authorities' actions under the homelessness legislation (Part 7 of the Housing Act 1996) is collected at local authority level, and published by the Department in the quarterly Statistical Release on Statutory Homelessness, available both in the Library of the House and via the DCLG website:

Data collected includes the number of households accepted by local housing authorities as eligible for assistance, unintentionally homeless and in priority need, and therefore owed a main homelessness duty (to ensure that suitable accommodation is available). If a settled home is not immediately available, the authority must secure temporary accommodation until a settled home becomes available and this information is also collected.

The number of households accepted as owed a main homelessness duty during the July to September quarter of 2010 and the number of households in temporary accommodation at the end of September in East Sussex and England are given in the following table:

Number of households accepted as owed a main homelessness duty Number of households in temporary accommodation
Eastbourne 3 31
Hastings 15 26
Lewes 9 57
Rother 15 12
Wealden 33 54
Cast Sussex 75 180
England 11,840 49,680

P1E returns, July to September quarter 2010

The data is not collected at constituency level. Hastings and Rye constituency is made up of electoral wards in Hastings and Rother.

Further information for each local authority is given in the following table at the following link:

Information is also collected on rough sleeping. Since 1998, only councils in areas with a known, or suspected, rough sleeping problem were required to conduct an official rough sleeper count-which meant that only 70 councils submitted information to central Government. Figures published in July 2010 showed that under this previous method, on any given night there were 440 rough sleepers in England. However, the coalition Government wanted a more complete measure of rough sleeping and when the remaining 256 councils provided estimates of the scale of the problem in their areas, this added a further estimated 807 rough sleepers-taking the national total to 1,247 rough sleepers on any given night. All local authorities in East Sussex gave estimates, these are given in the following table along with the England figure:

Number of rough sleepers
Eastbourne 4
Hastings 3
Lewes 2
Rother 4
Wealden 0
East Sussex 13
England 1,247

2010 local authority street counts and estimates

The data is not collected at constituency level.

Rough sleeping figures are published by the Department on the DCLG website and are given by local authority in the table at the following link:

Under new guidance all councils across England will now provide information on rough sleeping. This move follows consultation with homelessness charities and councils and is aimed at getting a clearer picture of the scale of the problem in each area so more targeted support can be provided to some of the most vulnerable in society.

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