10:34 Wednesday 29 January 2014

Homeless service could be axed as part of cuts

Written byROB SMYTH

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HOMELESS services in South Derbyshire could be badly affected if council chiefs give the go-ahead to cuts related to support services in the area.

Charity P3 outlined its worries after it was revealed that Derbyshire County Council had proposed plans to make £9 million of overall savings from its housing-related support service programme.

It would mean that homeless services in the area would be impacted, as well as mental health and elderly support, and could even see the support it provides to homeless people in the area stopped by September.

P3 service co-ordinator Sharon Perry said: “Earlier this month, Derbyshire County Council released proposals to make £9 million overall savings from the housing-related support service programme.

“Approximately £1 million of this is to be saved in 2014-15.

“P3 currently delivers three services across the county – homelessness provision, housing options for older people and mental health support services.

“All of these services are likely to be heavily affected by the proposed cuts.

“The proposals would mean homelessness provision ending from September 2014, housing options for older people ending in March 2015 and mental health services also ending in March 2015.

“So, as the proposals stand, all funding for P3 services in South Derbyshire would end in early 2015.”

The cuts are part of the council’s bid to save £157 million by 2018.

Council leader Anne Western said: “We’re facing massive financial pressures like never before and that means we’ve got difficult decisions to make.

“We don’t want to cut any services, but we have no choice. Some services will remain, some will be run differently, but some will have to stop.”

It comes only days after it was revealed the authority was not renewing its £220,000 a year contract with family support service Home-Start .

However, the service has enough funds to carry on for the ‘foreseeable future’.

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