Salford skills and work programme

Salford Mayor Paul Dennett says low-income families could end up homeless if the £20 per week Universal Credit bonus is removed.

Mayor Dennett said of the government plan to end the uplift: “It will push more families into poverty, more families into destitution.

“This issue manifested itself before Covid. The situation in Greater Manchester and up and down the country is very much precarious.

“But there’s been a call to arms with the Greater Manchester community coming together to tackle what is a humanitarian crisis. In my view, a roof over your head is a human right and witnessing the call to arms over the last three years has been great to see.”

Charities such as The Mustard Tree, which has a based in Salford, are providing beds for homeless people through their association with the “A Bed Every Night” launched by Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham. The scheme that now is seeing more use than any other previous year due to the pandemic.

Burnham launched this scheme with the help of Salford mayor Paul Dennett, Jo Walby, CEO of homelessness prevention charity The Mustard Tree, and Reverend Ian Rutherford, from the Homelessness Action Network.

The aim of the scheme was to commit the homeless people of Greater Manchester, including Salford, to accommodation and financial and social support.

Extra capacity has been issued by Andy Burnham through 40 additional accommodations. The scheme now places 470 in a bed every night with more than 3,000 homeless people having benefitted from the service.

Jo Walby also issued a statement clarifying the governments’ lack of involvement in all the contributions and investments into the homelessness issue.

“The latest count showed we’ve got 115 people sleeping rough across Greater Manchester right now. That’s 115 too many, particularly in the middle of a pandemic. It’s a really challenging situation.

“So the Combined Authority today has signed off an additional £600,000 for A Bed Every Night from our own funding. This is not government funding.”

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