Trish Hardy, Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing at Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council discussed the current challenges surrounding homelessness.

To truly make a difference it is of the utmost importance to better understand the homeless cohort in the area you’re operating in. The unique nature of an area cannot be overlooked when making policies to tackle homelessness.

Merseyside has a population of roughly 280,000, with a rough sleepers count of 11. However, the coastline of Sefton is 22 miles long which attracts a lot of tourism, meaning there is a transient rough sleeper population in the area. Utilising the local faith and charity sectors to coordinate services and offer a flexible approach has made a huge difference in keeping people engaged with programmes, and off the streets.

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Every area has a distinct homeless cohort, and blanket policies are not the answer. Councillor Trish Hardy of Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council explains that treating each area as unique and taking the time to learn the intricacies of the rough sleeping population is vital to helping individuals.

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