One of my ambitions is to ensure that rough sleeping in Watford is eradicated. Watford is incredibly lucky to have New Hope and One YMCA, who work really well together. Since 2020 I am proud to have lobbied for Watford to receive more than £4.5 million in additional funding from central government to help those sleeping rough rebuild their lives.
Thanks to this additional funding aiding the work of local organisations, numbers in Watford have plummeted. However, we must ensure that rough sleeping is eradicated.
The government took unprecedented steps to protect rough sleepers during the pandemic, launching the ‘Everyone In’ initiative. The Government is determined to build on the success of this, helping make sure people continue to have a safe place to stay and can begin to rebuild their lives with wrap-around services and care.
Watford had dozens of "known and verified" rough sleepers or people at risk of rough sleeping at the beginning of the pandemic. By January 2021, Watford reported that it had no rough sleepers and this has continued until today, with almost no rough sleepers on our streets for over two years.
Ensuring that everyone has a roof over their head is crucial, and the Government is committed to ending rough sleeping once and for all during this Parliament. I am proud to have ensured Watford is leading the way by securing the funding and thankful to our incredible homelessness charities ensuring success on the ground.