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Shadow Homeless Minster visits GM Housing First

Caption: Paul Dennett (Salford City Mayor), Joe Donahue (GMCA Principal for Homelessness), Paula Barker MP (Shadow Minister for Homelessness and Rough Sleeping), Emily Cole (GMHF Programme Lead), Jane Forrest (GMCA Director of Public Service Reform) and Esme Davies (GMCA Project and Commissioning Manager) following the meeting.

Shadow Minister for Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Paula Barker MP visited Great Places Housing group head office to talk about the Greater Manchester Housing First partnership and our approach to delivering Housing First across the region.

The Liverpool Wavertree MP met with Programme Lead Emily Cole, Great Places CEO Matt Harrison, Salford City Mayor Paul Dennett as well as officials from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, delivery partners and members of the partnership’s co-production panel about the successes of the programme – now in its fifth year.

The GM partnership, one of three regional pilots testing the Housing First model at scale commissioned in 2019, has been a huge success with 359 people with multiple and complex issues rehoused at a tenancy sustainment rate of 77 per cent – creating systemic change across the region as a result.

The Shadow Minister said: “It was great to hear first-hand about the successes of the GM Housing First partnership at a strategic level, from those who deliver the service and from those who receive it.

“There is no doubt that the work being done in Greater Manchester is a testament to the model and the innovative way it has been delivered in the region.

“The model has proven to be effective in tackling entrenched rough sleeping and homelessness and it is something we will be looking at as we build towards the next general election.”

Programme Lead Emily Cole added: “It was great to meet Paula and her team to discuss the successes the partnership has enjoyed and how the regional delivery model can make a significant impact on the most vulnerable people in society.

“We are vehement advocates of the model and will continue to work hard, so that Housing First is a central pillar of Governmental policy to support people experiencing multiple disadvantage and homelessness moving forward.”

Great Places Chief Executive Matthew Harrison said: “It was a pleasure to host Paula and get the chance to inform possible policy thinking for putting an end to rough sleeping.

“Great Places has been proud to be the accountable body for the Greater Manchester Housing First pilot and to play a leading role in what has been a fantastically successful programme based on collaboration with other organisations and putting people first.

“We hope that the success of the Housing First pilot can translate into sustainable, long-term funding for a programme to end the scourge of rough sleeping once and for all.”


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