To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, with reference to the finding of Solace Women’s Aid’s report entitled Violence against women and girls, housing and homelessness: A joined up strategy, that 70 per cent of women who have experienced domestic violence also have a housing need, what steps his Department is taking to tackle the shortage of suitable long-term housing for domestic abuse survivors.
It is critical that victims of domestic abuse get support, especially when they are in housing need. In May 2020 the Government announced its intent to give those who are homeless as a result of being a victim of domestic abuse priority need for accommodation secured by the local authority. This will be achieved through the Domestic Abuse Bill and will help to ensure victims do not remain with their abuser for fear of not having a roof over their head.
Local authorities have a statutory duty to provide temporary accommodation for households in priority need and owed the main homelessness duty until suitable long-term accommodation can be offered to them. Housing authorities have a continuing obligation to keep the suitability of accommodation under review, and to respond to any relevant change in circumstances which may affect suitability.
The Government is committed to increasing the supply of affordable housing and are investing over £12 billion in affordable housing over 5 years, the largest investment in affordable housing in a decade. This includes the new £11.5 billion Affordable Homes Programme, which will provide up to 180,000 new homes across the country, should economic conditions allow.