The Government has admitted it has no idea how many rough sleepers housed under Everyone In have returned to the streets.
A letter to council chief executives in September 2020 had asked local authorities that had received funding from the Next Steps Accommodation Programme (NSAP) to inform the Government how many helped by Everyone In had since returned to rough sleeping – one of a number of key performance indicators (KPI) originally drawn up for the scheme.
However, the Government later backtracked and decided not to collect the data.
A statement from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) read: ‘The reason that the information is not held is that changes were made subsequent to this letter and prior to the data collection going live in October.
'This information was not included in the final KPIs for the programme and so not collected.
'It is worth noting the difficulty in compiling accurate data from a transient population such as rough sleepers.’
According to homelessness charity Shelter, almost three-quarters of the people helped through the Everyone In programme – almost 30,000 people – have not moved into settled accommodation.
The Government has so far refused to reveal how many of the 3,300 accommodation units committed to as part of the NSAP were delivered before its March 2021 deadline, how many accommodation units have been brought into use and by which date it expects to meet its target.
DLUHC permanent secretary Jeremy Pocklington said there had been an ‘acceleration of delivery’ in the first quarter of 2021-22 and promised to update the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on the 'progress now being made in due course, following the completion of all units from the allocations announced in October 2020’.
The PAC is poised to haul the department into Parliament to answer questions over rough sleeping in the next few weeks.