England & Wales Housing and planning

Video roundtable: Rough sleeping – just the tip of the iceberg


Photo Credit: Rob Oo Flickr via Compfight cc

LGiU is working with CLGdotTV to produce a series of programmes discussing a range of local government issues.

Our first programmes focused on homelessness. Vicky Sargent of CLGdotTV hosted a chat with Andrew Walker, managing the LGiU’s Homelessness Commission, Cllr Stephanie Cryan of LB Southwark and Dawn Eckersley of the East London Housing Partnership to explain the depth of the housing crisis and how councils are responding.

The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 – part of the Government’s aim to halve rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminate it by 2027 – has expanded councils’ duties significantly and will fundamentally change their approach to the issue.


But as our discussion reveals, rough sleeping is simply the most visible manifestation of homelessness, which also takes in the 80,000 plus households in temporary accommodation, and larger numbers in precarious housing, poor housing or reduced to ‘sofa surfing’ – all situations that could lead to homelessness at any time.

This discussion explores how councils are responding to the Homelessness Reduction Act and its challenges, but as importantly, looks at the deep-seated causes of the current housing crisis, from a broken housing market, the impact of Universal Credit, the policy of selling off council homes, and the chronic failure to build new social housing.

Watch the programme here. 

Check out more about the LGiU Homelessness Commission including interim findings. The Homelessness Commission is due to report in the next few months.

Keep an eye out on further programmes, including local elections and more. You can also sign up to updates on all CLGdotTV programmes.