1. ITV Report

Number of rough sleepers in Yorkshire increases by 50 per cent

Credit: Press Association

The number of people sleeping rough in Yorkshire increased by 50% between 2010 and 2016, research published today has found.

people living on the streets in Yorkshire

The National Audit Office said a survey carried out in August last year found an estimated 172 people on the streets – up from around 120 six years earlier.

Nationally, there were more than 4,000 rough sleepers, a 134% rise since the Conservatives took power.

There were 77,240 households in temporary accommodation in March 2017, an increase of 60% since March 2011.

These households included 120,540 children, an increase of 73 per cent over the same period.

Homelessness costs the public sector more than £1bn a year.

The NAO said that the government's Department for Communities and Local Government, which is responsible for managing homelessness lacks what it calls a "cross-government strategy" to tackle the problem.

Amyas Morse, head of the NAO, said:

“Homelessness in all its forms has significantly increased in recent years, driven by several factors. Despite this, government has not evaluated the impact of its reforms on this issue, and there remain gaps in its approach.

It is difficult to understand why the Department persisted with its light touch approach in the face of such a visibly growing problem. Its recent performance in reducing homelessness therefore cannot be considered value for money”.

– Amyas Morse, National Audit Office

A government spokesman said:

"Tackling homelessness is a complex issue with no single solution, but this government is determined to help the most vulnerable in society.

We're investing £550m to 2020 to address the issue and implementing the most ambitious legislative reform in decades, the Homelessness Reduction Act."

– UK Government spokesperson