Funding Boost to Help Keep People off the Streets
Services to prevent people sleeping on the streets in South Tyneside will be further strengthened thanks to a £250k funding boost.
The council has been awarded a share of money following a successful regional bid to the government's Rough Sleeping Initiative.
The cash will provide additional services to tackle homelessness, including three properties to house people who would otherwise be living on the streets, a round-the-clock outreach team to respond to reports of rough sleepers and a sustainment worker to help people maintain their tenancies.
The council carries out a bi-monthly head count of rough sleepers in the Borough and at the last two counts, identified one person.
Cllr Mark Walsh, Lead Member for Housing and Transport, said: "Fortunately, we have very few rough sleepers in the Borough, with only one person found at the last snapshot counts - however that is still one person too many; no one should be sleeping on the streets in South Tyneside.
"We already take a very proactive, early intervention approach to homelessness.
"This funding will enable us to continue our successful prevention work and expand the services we offer to support vulnerable residents and tackle repeat homelessness.
"We will have three properties specifically for people who might not ordinarily get access to a council property and a sustainment officer to offer intensive support to ensure they don't return to rough sleeping.
"There will also be a 24-hour outreach service, meaning we can respond to reports of rough sleepers straight away."
The funding is a share of just under £1.5m which Durham County Council led on behalf of 11 North East local authorities.
It will also help pay for the continuation of SSTSs - Somewhere Safe to Stay - across the region. These are centres which provide up to three days emergency accommodation to people who are not eligible for temporary accommodation.
It will also continue to fund two regional coordinators, a prison housing officer, and a specialist substance misuse worker.