PLAN OF ACTION TO GIVE ISLAND’S HOMELESS A ‘BETTER LIFE’ REVEALED

A new action plan has been outlined by the Isle of Wight Council to give a ‘better life’ to Islanders facing homelessness.

Some of the actions include using all available powers to the council to bring empty properties back into use, establishing a peer mentor programme for homeless households and assisting residents to access the private rental market.

The council could also introduce a dedicated director of housing to tackle some of the issues.

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The plan will see the authority take short, medium and long-term actions in the next 2 years to address issues in the prevention, intervention and recovery of homeless families and individuals.

The council also sets out the action of increasing the housing supply, availability and accessibility in the social and private sectors. It comes as numbers of people on the housing register continue to rise and the cost of living crisis hits more and more Island households.

Speaking at the cabinet meeting on Monday, where the action plan was approved, Councillor Phil Jordan said the cabinet had that morning given clear direction to officers to take start intervention for those in Bed and Breakfasts and provide them with homes which could include buying houses.

The action plan ties in with the authority’s ‘Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Strategy’ which was agreed in 2019 and sets the target of eliminating rough sleeping on the Isle of Wight.

The Isle of Wight Council had approved its budget in February which included setting up a housing company and borrowing £40million to start building houses which are affordable for Islanders.

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While 138 affordable properties were built on the Island last year, Councillor Stephens said it was nowhere near good enough and Councillor Geoff Brodie said it was depressing to hear how little had been achieved since the go-ahead was given to borrow the money. He asked whether the employment of a director of housing had been considered, to take the challenge on, instead of having it spread across council departments.

Cllr Stephens said when he took on the cabinet portfolio of housing and homelessness the way the housing was dealt with in the authority had its strengths but a ‘hell of a lot of weaknesses’, and the council was heading down the route of having someone in charge to ‘steer the ship’.

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Danger Mouse
Danger Mouse
10 days ago

At the rate they are going they won’t even meet the additional names being added to the housing register. Let alone the thousands already on it. I have zero faith they will even scratch the surface.

Box Ticking
Box Ticking
10 days ago

So the ‘wise ones’ recommend an additional layer of management to steer a previously rudderless ship (makes you wonder how anything gets done).

This will probably be on top of new management for its new housing company. Can’t wait for that.

Hope we have enough houses to home the new managers.

isle of wighter
isle of wighter
10 days ago

The councilors should address the real issue, rather than paper over it with wasting taxpayers money on employing a director and wasting more taxpayers cash, borrowing money which will be paid back with more council taxpayers cash in the form of interest payments and start refusing to accept benefit claimants moving to the island at taxpayers expense, as well as ratcheting up second home ownership council tax by 1000% to deter second home buyers.

It is the endless policy of increasing the population on the island that is the real problem. These councillors are just treating the symptoms of their poor policies, not the causes.

Zog the merciless
Zog the merciless
Reply to  isle of wighter
9 days ago

Except most of the increase in IW population is down to people retiring here, but don’t let that put you off another one of your “benefit claimant” rants.

Country-lore
Country-lore
10 days ago

Questions should be asked, WHY are you homeless, and all answers checked out BEFORE making life cushy for these people

Whilst some will have genuine issues, many are vile, have been nasty, deceitful hence friends and family have given up on them, and some are dangerous.

An image of a sad old man tugs heartstrings but many people are like the housed, not pleasant, any I suggest those who feel different house them for a while to see ‘who’ is most correct

For the Council aren’t paying for it out of their salaries, we are.

Franky
Franky
Reply to  Country-lore
9 days ago

I was homeless for a year when I was 16,no help what so ever,had to cycle to newport from oakfield everyday to get my 20 pound a week,most ignorant comment and country name suggests you are posh,have some empathy a lot of people have bad luck

C the light
C the light
Reply to  Franky
9 days ago

Perhaps to counteract the post from lore, you could enlighten us why you were homeless and such a young age?

As the above poster was merely saying that some cases are reasonable others self inflicted.

Tax payers are sick of paying for those who don’t ‘bover’ at school, who don’t use free contraception and shove buggy fulls of various ‘fathers’ children around and expect us to still keep giving to them who chose to mess up their worthless lives.

Hence lores thumbs up and yours down

Still society luckily is weak and gullible so fellow wasters will be treated well.

Knut
Knut
10 days ago

Is that honestly what you think a homeless person looks like? Not in 2022.

Stefan C. Attrill
Stefan C. Attrill
Reply to  Knut
10 days ago

I agree. Then, again, what does a homeless person look like? A poor choice of photo by the editor.

A family was made homeless as their landlord wanted to turn their home into a house of multiple occupancies. The family are currently ‘sofa-surfing’ as the IW council ‘process’ their application. Sadly, there are no affordable alternatives for the family.

Councils across the UK used to have plenty of housing stock; you could pick & choose an affordable home. Then came Maggie Thacher, selling the stock to their residents. But, the monies from those sales weren’t used to build new homes.

gandalf
gandalf
Reply to  Stefan C. Attrill
9 days ago

Thatcher sold off social housing stock to residents at a fraction of their worth in the “houses for votes” scandal. The money went “god knows” where, but this action seriously depleted housing stock which has never recovered under successive Tory governments (and I include Blair’s in that). That woman started the culture of greed that led us to where we are now. May she rot in hell.

Zog the merciless
Zog the merciless
Reply to  gandalf
9 days ago

And Bozo is playing the same trick by forcing housing associations to offer their houses for sale to tenants at knockdown prices.

Cut2chase
Cut2chase
Reply to  gandalf
9 days ago

Rubbish. Selling off council houses NEVER reduced housing stock!

Good God, some of you are so dim.

Every council house sold has ‘someone’ living in it, so the amount of housing stock was not diminished at all from Mrs T’s selling such.

Much of the money was used building more homes for those who despite being poor, still selfishly have lot of children, and are so dim, think that ‘as we gotta ouse, so will everything my parnter(s) womb produces’

Well about time the thick learnt the hard way and what you bred YOU keep housed in your home.

Paarthurnax the Wise
Paarthurnax the Wise
Reply to  Cut2chase
9 days ago

Selling off council houses never reduced overall housing stock. That is pretty obvious as the houses are still there.

What it did was reduce affordable housing stock as the sold houses are now in private ownership or private rental which is considerably higher than housing association rent.

Most of the money actually went to pay off Government debt and comparatively little (to the number sold off) social housing has been built since the Thatcher well-off.

It is unwise to question people’s intelligence when you as showing such a lack of that attribute yourself.

Uncle Ben
Uncle Ben
Reply to  gandalf
9 days ago

Makes me laugh that my political hero Maggie still gets under the skins of you pathetic ignorant, unintelligent lefties.

Qwerty King
Qwerty King
10 days ago

Only 138 homes built last year. They’ll go to families and the vulnerable. The homeless won’t get a look in once again. More headline grabbing.

Incredible !!
Incredible !!
10 days ago

What peeves me the most is seeing ‘ council’ homes ie : 2 bed detached house with a rental of under £400 per month… yet a private rental similar.. rental price double or more per month… Too many landlords/estate agents taking the piss !!! Plus then you get all these other charges.. holding property charge, contract charge, key charge, showing you the property charge, extra charge if have a pet, A huge deposit to go into a holding deposit scheme… which many never see again… plus various other charges…so a private rental at say £850 month, one would need another £2000 before going over the threshold… greed….. and unlawful..

Stefan C. Attrill
Stefan C. Attrill
Reply to  Incredible !!
10 days ago

It’s going to get worse as Boris wants to do what Maggie Thatcher did; sell council homes to their tenants. However, the monies made from the sale of council stock won’t be used to build new homes but to clear the massive debt, our Government has built up. Soon, there will be no affordable council homes, just private landlords abusing their tenants by charging astronomical rents.

Brad
Brad
Reply to  Incredible !!
10 days ago

It’s not greed or unlawful, many tenants bankrupt landlords that don’t know how to deal with bad tenants so why don’t you give it a try instead of badmouthing landlords, because some of these landlords go thousands in debt to help and house these people, only to get a property back after a bad tenant that is now unrentable

 

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