A Bed Every Night Over Winter? Shaping the Answers.

Greater Manchester Homelessness Action Network
Report 2

The question posed by Andy Burnham at last week’s meeting of the Greater Manchester Homelessness Action Network was simple: Can we aim to give people sleeping rough a bed overnight, every night from October 2018 to March 2019? The answers will need cooperation, coordination and co-production. Here’s a brief summary of the outputs so far. Much more to follow:

How might people get into the spaces?

People will get in through a 24/7 single point of well-resourced access.
The public should have one clear message so they know what to do.

How can a common approach across GM areas be coordinated?

We need to start planning now for a September sign-off.
We need a contact list, minimum standards, list of accommodation with criteria, common paperwork, as well as a named coordinator for each LA.
We need many people to be aware of the approach across GM

The spaces must be good quality, secure, differentiated for specific groups and for no more than 20 people.
Accommodation needs to be supported with a package of commissioned services and trained volunteers providing set-up, welcome, hospitality, refreshments. security, transport, needs assessment, signposting to daytime provision, specialist intervention and re-set.

Which different groups of people & specific needs need to be considered?

People with different needs require small, flexible spaces with a choice on where they want to be.
Women, young people, BME, LGBTQ, veterans, people with mental and physical health difficulties, people with autism, people with pets and more.

Which deposit, guarantor or other schemes can be made available for people moving into tenancies?

We need flexible, accessible money for people in poverty so that we can pay property owners to aid in securing accommodation.

How can sustainable tenancies be supported?

Tenancies need to be supported by a common, person-centered approach across all ten boroughs

How can citizens respond simply and effectively?

Citizens need a clear, consistent, GM-wide message on what’s needed through both physical and online marketing.
Citizens need a single easily accessible list of what is needed – items, money and volunteers.
Physical pop up locations for dropping off donations and getting advice needs to be considered and resourced.

How can community organisers help?

Community organisers can support by mobilising supporters, sharing local knowledge and measuring impact

What Next?

With an aim to have this extra provision in place for the start of October, focused collaboration across Greater Manchester is vital to pull in extra resources and co-ordinate a response. To reach this ambitious target, we will need not only the public sector across GM, but also the voluntary sector, faith and community groups, businesses and willing citizens.

Through Street Support Network, we will determine what donations and volunteers are needed to provide extra accommodation over winter, and collate a central list of what is needed. Once the details of night provision are decided, it needs to be simpler for people rough sleeping to find out where available accommodation is near them, and how to get inside this winter. All of this will be co-produced through the GM network, and include people with personal insight into homelessness, alongside frontline workers and decision makers.

Get Involved

It will take a combined effort to make this happen. If you can help in any way, please get in touch. This is a borough-wide ask and needs a borough-wide response.

Thanks for taking the time to go through this and for your future support. We’ll continue to keep you updated.