If you’ve been paying attention then you’ll already know that the next GMWRAG meeting will take place on Friday the 9th of December 2016 in Tameside. Just about everything you could possibly want to know was contained in our authoritative (well, long) post here.
The only thing missing from that post was, of course, the agenda. We are pleased to announce that the agenda can now be downloaded from here.
Please remember to download and print both the agenda and minutes and bring them with you to the meeting. GMWRAG hosts are kind enough to provide a room and refreshments from their own pocket. There is no budget for printing. If anyone fancies chairing the p.m. meeting that would be much appreciated.
This is a full day meeting and to add value we have managed to secure the services of two speakers (although two may eventually read four).
SPEAKER 1 – Homeless Prevention Service officers.
The increase in rough sleeping in the towns and cities across Greater Manchester is self-evident. The increase in other forms of homelessness is seen in the queues in reception areas of council homelessness services.
Welfare rights advisers know some of the causes – bedroom tax, benefit cap, rates of LHA for singles and couples in shared accommodation, and under 35’s, as well as massive reductions in community support services, MH support, and housing rights advice services.
Other factors include reduction in hostel bed spaces, reductions in supported accommodation, rent increases that price out benefit claimants, and unfair and unreasonable sanction decisions.
Listen to those tasked with dealing with part of this situation. What can be done by local authorities to meet the need? What legal and policy restrictions do they have to work with? What are the procedures for the single and family homeless officers to respond to housing need of applicants?
David Unsworth and Jean Cavanagh specialise in brokering accommodation for applicants, sometimes vulnerable and hard to accommodate groups. They work with MH services, ex-offender support, hospital discharge teams and others. Mandy Bradbury will come along if she is available. She is the Team Leader for the Homeless Prevention and Assessment Service at Manchester City Council. They are also interested in finding out about advice services available across Greater Manchester, as their service increasingly is looking to place people outside Manchester.
SPEAKER 2 – GM Law Centre – John Nicholson, Barrister and Chair of the GM Law Centre Steering Group) will talk about the reasons for the project, the current stage of development, and plans for the next 2 years and more.
Both speakers have plenty of time built into the agenda for questions and discussion.
We look forward to seeing you there.