Policy statement on Homelessness

Liberal Vannin notes the recent report on Manx Radio relating to Party Leader, Lawrie Hooper, MHK’s response to a Tynwald question from Rob Callister, MHK covering the emergency provision of accommodation for people who find themselves homeless:

Health service a ‘last resort’ for emergency accommodation – Manx Radio

The Party expresses its concern that 12 months since the charity, Graih, withdrew its provision, government has still not provided a sustainable solution to the problems faced by Manx residents who become homeless here, on the Island. We recognise that the support given by the DHSC and Manx Care over the last 12 months is merely scratching the surface and is not readily accessible to many vulnerable people, who can’t always find support from friends and family, many of whom are ill-equipped to do so.
However, we do recognise that, whenever possible, it is best for homeless people to obtain help first from a parent, sibling, or friend before the Government, because family and friends can provide the most important things needed by people in distress: love, respect, discipline, routine, guidance, hope, and understanding. Government can’t provide those things.

We acknowledge and look forward to the long-awaited government strategy document on homelessness and hope that it will lead to immediate action and not further interminable discussion and obfuscation.

At its AGM on August 14th, Liberal Vannin members discussed a policy proposal on Housing, which contains the following section on Homelessness:

Combatting Homelessness
We recognise that homelessness has implications across other policy areas including health, crime and education. Homelessness can be the result of a variety of causes, and we need to deal with prevention as well as cure. We will campaign for:

Legislation to introduce a statutory duty to provide emergency accommodation for people who become homeless, especially as a result of domestic abuse.

Provide access to housing and independent living support for people leaving prison.

Mandating Manx Care to take responsibility for ensuring that patients being discharged into the community have suitable accommodation arranged for them and suitably trained helpers to support them.

Liberal Vannin supports the Minister for Health and Social Care in arguing for the above within the Council of Ministers and Tynwald to achieve these aims.