The UK Government announced an additional £3 million in funding will be made available to improve night shelters in England, which will help them provide more beds, better facilities, and increased support to rough sleepers.
“The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) explained that the funding boost to the Night Shelter Transformation Fund should provide thousands of rough sleepers with access to a safe place to stay,” said Ms Armstrong.
“However, due to there being no Executive or ministers in place, any Barnett consequential will be held by the Treasury and not passed to NI, so we will not benefit here from such announcements during 2023/2024.
“This uplift will provide even more people in England who find themselves in the unfortunate position of having to sleep rough with a roof over their heads and the support they need to get back on their feet. It’s just a shame that those in Northern Ireland who are also in desperate need of such services are going to miss out due to the political impasse at Stormont.
“As many as over 100,000 people in Northern Ireland are personally affected in some way by homelessness, and especially in the midst of a cost of living crisis, many more could be as little as one major life event away from falling into it. Those people deserve all the help we can give them.
“It’s disgraceful that our citizens continue to pay the price for one party’s political aims. It’s time that the DUP stopped their boycott, and that the NI Executive was restored and back making decisions about how the NI block grant and Barnett consequentials can be used for the benefit of Northern Ireland.”