Two key recommendations were made for how the Mayor of London could tackle youth homelessness.
1) To invest in truly affordable housing for young people
Depaul UK recommended that the Mayor should ensure that a portion of the £3.15 billion of affordable housing funding he has secured is used to provide housing that is affordable for those in receipt of the shared accommodation rate of housing benefit. Some of this new housing could be made available to those who have experienced or are at risk of homelessness.
2) The Mayor should use his profile to encourage Londoners to volunteer as Nightstop emergency hosts
Depaul delivers Nightstop, a safe and quality assured voluntary emergency hosting scheme, in London as part of the London Youth Gateway. In 2016 Nightstop London delivered 2,000 bed nights in the homes of volunteer hosts. Nightstop London could deliver many more bed nights if more hosts were available. Depaul UK recommends that the Mayor use his strong public profile to help Nightstop to recruit more hosts and therefore ensure that more beds are available for young people in London with nowhere else to go.
The Mayor should create a pan-London approach to providing short stay accommodation to prevent young people becoming street homeless, which supplements existing Nightstop provision and works for young people from all of London’s diverse communities.