Layla Moran, Lib Dem MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, has today written to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) to ask for long-term funding for the Oxfordshire Trailblazer project.
In the letter to the Rt Hon. Robert Jenrick MP, who became the head of MHCLG last week as part of Boris Johnson’s cabinet reshuffle, Layla writes:
“Trailblazer is a shining example of how we can work together across local authorities, charities, government, health services, justice and other organisations to take a holistic, compassionate approach to this issue. In Britain in 2019, it is scandalous that even one person is homeless.”
MHCLG provided the vast majority of the funding for the pilot project (£790,000 of £890,000), and this is set to run out in September. Without further money from central government, project providers will be unable to deliver the same level of service as they do at present.
The local MP urges the Government to make a strong financial commitment, and invites the Secretary of State to meet her to discuss the issue further.
Commenting, Layla Moran said:
“The Trailblazer project shows just what can be done when government, local authorities, charities and others all work together. Homelessness is a national scourge and we all need to do our bit to end this crisis.
“I hope that the Secretary of State considers renewing funding for the scheme; when pilots go well, they should then be able to receive long-term support.
“I and the Liberal Democrats are committed to taking a compassionate approach to homelessness. That’s why we would scrap the cruel Dickensian Vagrancy Act, which criminalises rough sleeping.”