Homeless Service Delivers Significant Improvements

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedInDumfries and Galloway Councillors at this week’s Communities committee will be told about some big improvements that have been delivered by the Council’s Homeless Service.An Improvement Plan was created for the Homeless Service in May 2016 and progress on the plan will be reported to Councillors next week.The actions in the Improvement Plan have been prioritised based on those that would benefit customers. As such, Councillors will hear about some real improvements that have been made within the service that are making a difference for some of the most vulnerable customers that use our Council’s services. Some actions completed include:• New service standards for providing housing options and housing support advice• Reviewing the use of temporary accommodation including reducing the use of accommodation below standard; reducing prolonged stays in accommodation and improved reporting on accommodation types• Improvements to procedures and protocols for staff dealing with homeless applications and customers in temporary accommodationThis Improvement Plan has resulted in improved performance for the Homeless Service:• Average number of weeks to close a homeless case reduced from 40 days last year to 32 days this year – better than the Scottish average• Percentage of customers who were satisfied with the quality of temporary accommodation increased from 84.2% last year to 91.3% this year – better than the Scottish average• Percentage of Homeless applications assessed within 28 days rose from 73.7% last year to 91.4% this year – better than the Scottish average.One of the improvement actions that has been achieved in the last year that the service is particularly proud of relates temporary accommodation being provided to 99.7% of the cases in the past year (the remaining 0.3% relates to 2 specific cases which the current housing stock could not accommodate).Councillors will also be told at the committee how some of the actions in the Improvement Plan are assisting with preparing the service for the introduction of Universal Credit next year and the significant impact it will have. Chair of the Communities committee, Cllr Andy Ferguson, said “I’m pleased that this report will be presented to councillors so they can hear about the significant progress that has been made implementing the service’s Improvement Plan. Our Homeless Service is essential for so many individuals facing very difficult circumstances. For that reason, that fact the service has made so many improvements that have made a real difference to these customers is a huge step forward.”Vice Chair of Communities Committee, Cllr John Martin, said “The report today outlined some of the improvements that have been delivered by the Homeless service and although we realise there is still work to do to deliver all the actions in the Plan, the progress so far is a fantastic start. With Challenge Poverty week fast approaching (15-21 October), reports like this that show how our Council is improving its services to make a real difference for homeless families and individuals.”last_img