Rise of children living in bed and breakfast accommodation in Doncaster due to crisis in housing

Almost 100 households were placed into bed and breakfast accommodation in just three months due to problems with housing.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 12 June, 2019, 12:41
The number of children being placed into B&Bs has gone up. Housing services have a duty to provide residents with emergency housing if theyhave reason to believe they may be homeless or have a priority need for housing.

St Leger Homes, the council’s housing partner, said they have had to increase the number of properties they use for temporary accomodation and say putting people in B&Bs is a ‘last resort’ where ‘no other accomodation is available’.

The figures seen by council cabinet members, show 75 households were placed into B&Bs between Janurary and March 2019 compared to 58 between October and December 2018.

Comparing the same period, 45 families with children had to be placed in B&Bs – up from 43 in the previous quarter.

Housing bosses say in the last 12 months, 274 households were placed in bed and breakfasts across the borough.

But the figures show the number of nights people had to stay in temporary accomodation has reduced.

Between Janurary and March 2019, there was 502 nights compared to 569 between October and December 2018.

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Nigel Feirn, head of finance and business assurance at St Leger Homes, said: “Providing a safe, secure home can have a positive impact on a child’s physical and mental health and can lay the foundations for a healthy future.

"Any measures to reduce the number of people, especially families, living in bed and breakfast accommodation should improve health and wellbeing.

“It is encouraging to see that work has taken place to utilise general needs stock to address the number of placements in B&B accommodation. However, figures still remain high and the number of people in B&B has risen over the year.

“Of particular concern is the number of families - 45 families with children were placed in B&B in Q4.

“We recommend that work to place people elsewhere is continued and preventative work is undertaken to understand current systems of support and to prevent placements in B&B accommodation wherever possible.”