By Sophie Perrett, Rough Sleeper Manager, Solihull Councill
In October, Solihull saw the start of a new Rough Sleeper Outreach Team. Funded through the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities’ (DLHUC) Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI) grant programme, the team will build on existing outreach work by targeting new hotspots of homelessness and rough sleeping in the borough.
Deputy Leader for Solihull Council and Lead Member for Partnerships and Wellbeing, Cllr Karen Grinsell, said: “The new funding from the Rough Sleeping Initiative programme allows us to build on the work that we are already undertaking to tackle homelessness in the borough through Housing First, the Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme and our day to day outreach work.
“Until the pandemic, we have consistently had low figures for rough sleeping with between one and six people sleeping rough in Solihull town centre. However, since the pandemic we have found that people are now sleeping rough in new areas in the borough so we need a different approach. The new Rough Sleeper Outreach Team will give us the capacity and expertise to ensure that we can care for and move people safely off the streets and into secure housing.
“As always, I would ask that people continue to report anyone who they think is sleeping rough to StreetLink, the national reporting system. This information is vital for our outreach team and ensures that we can find the people that need our help. Let’s continue to work together to help homeless people.”