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STAYING IN TOUCH - ACCESS TO SERVICES FOR HOMELESS PEOPLE

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Good practice can prevent homeless people from losing access to vital services and becoming victims of social exclu...
Good practice can prevent homeless people from losing access to vital services and becoming victims of social exclusion, according to Staying in Touch, a study published by the London Housing Unit. The study of multi-agency strategies to ensure access to health, education and social services for homeless households includes recommendations for good practice and case studies.

Staying in Touch follows the progress of London initiatives by local authorities and voluntary sector bodies over the past three years, showing the impact of the Housing Act 1996 and changes in the legal position of asylum seekers.

Aimed at all those concerned with service provision for homeless households, the report is a follow up to 'Opening the Doors', which was published in 1995.

'The current review of the Homelessness Code of Guidance is expected to place greater emphasis on how housing departments, health authorities, social services authorities and voluntary sector bodies work together. This study shows that examples of good practice in joint working already exist, as local authorities try hard to address the issues in the face of serious resource constraints,' says report author Kirsten Firth.

'By choosing to revisit initiatives three years on, Staying in Touch provides far more than just a snapshot of the current situation for homeless households in London,' she added.

- Staying in Touch: Access to services for homeless people, a full report with good practice guidelines, is available from the London Housing Unit, price£12.50 including p&p, ISBN 1 872527 45 0. Call LHU on 0171 428 4925 for details.

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