MD2467 Move-On Programme: support provision

Type of decision: 
Mayoral decision
Code: 
MD2467
Date signed: 
08 May 2019
Decision by: 
Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

Executive summary

Under MD2052, the Mayor made available up to £50m for a Move-On Programme to develop homes for people moving on from homelessness hostels and refuges. As well as helping people to move on with their lives, the Move-On Programme will also free up valuable spaces in hostels and refuges for those who need them. Around 20 per cent of the homes developed will be for victims of domestic abuse and the rest for former rough sleepers.

At the end of 2017/8, the Mayor successfully lobbied the Government to convert £3.125m of the £50m into revenue funding that can be spent on support for people moving into the move-on homes. This MD establishes the arrangements for spending that revenue funding.

This MD sets out that, where housing providers secure capital funding through the Move-On Programme, they or a partner organisation will be able to receive revenue funding to pay for support they provide (subject to their fulfilling required criteria). Revenue funding will also be given to a lead body within the London Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Consortium, and they will distribute this funding to members of the Consortium who provide support to victims of domestic abuse living in homes delivered through the Move-On Programme.

Decision

That the Mayor:

1. Approves grant funding to housing providers, or their partners, to provide support to people housed through the Mayor’s Move-On Programme, at a cost of up to £2.375m to 31 March 2024 and a delegation to the Executive Director of Housing & Land to authorise individual grant allocations;

2. Approves the provision of up to £0.750m in grant funding to a lead organisation within the London Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Consortium to act as the accountable body for the GLA’s funding, and to distribute this funding to members of the Consortium for the provision of support to victims of domestic abuse housed through the programme with the funding agreement to run from May 2019 to March 2022 with an option to extend the grant by a further two years; and

3. Delegates to the Executive Director of Housing & Land the authority to:

• Approve the selection of the relevant lead body from the Consortium who will act as the accountable body for the GLA’s funding
• Increase the quantum and duration of funding for (i) housing providers or their partners; and (ii) the relevant lead body from the Consortium.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background
  1. The Mayor has made available up to £50m of funding to develop homes for people moving on from hostels and refuges (MD2052) (the ‘Move-On Programme’). This programme will help people to move on with their lives, and will free up valuable spaces in hostels and refuges for those who need them. Around 20 per cent of the homes developed will be for victims of domestic abuse and the rest for former rough sleepers. Residents will generally be given a two-year tenancy (with a view to moving on once they are ready to do so) and will receive support for as long as they need it.
  2.  
  3. The programme launched in late 2016. At that time, the lack of revenue funding to provide the support needed for the people who would move into the homes meant that there was very limited interest in bidding into the fund from providers. In recognition of this, at the end of 2017/8, the Mayor successfully lobbied the Government to convert £3.125m of the £50m into revenue funding. As a result, we are now seeing more interest from potential bidders, and are likely to enter into contract for two schemes very shortly (both of which will require GLA revenue funding for support).
  4.  
  5. The homes developed through the programme will be geographically dispersed throughout the capital. In most cases, support will be provided by the housing provider delivering the homes, or an organisation partnering with the housing provider.
  6.  
  7. It is likely that neither the housing providers nor their partner organisations will have the required specialisms for victims of domestic abuse, and so an alternative mechanism is needed to ensure that appropriate support is provided to this group.  
  8.  
  9. To date, none of the organisations that have submitted, or are preparing to submit, capital funding bids have been able to provide revenue funding for support or secure it from an external source. It is therefore expected that the GLA will fund the support of all the residents accommodated through the programme. 
  10.  
  11. As the funding will be demand-led, and the timing of the spend will depend on when the homes being funded through the programme are delivered, it is not possible to provide a definitive spend profile. Below is an indicative spend profile, which will change over time to reflect the trend of demand.

 

2019/20

2020/21

2021/22

2022/23

2023/24

Total

£476,633

£737,379

£740,903

£740,903

£429,182

£3,125,000

  1.  
  2.  
  3.  
  4. It should be noted that the £3.125m available is unlikely to be sufficient to cover the costs of support for at least three years for all the homes developed through the programme. Once the current revenue funding is committed, agreement will be sought from the Government to convert a further amount of the capital funding to revenue. It is considered likely that the Government will agree this, as £6m of the £50m in the equivalent programme run by Homes England outside London has been earmarked as revenue funding for support. It is also possible that the Government may make available additional revenue funding, over and above the £50m. Any further amount will be used in the same way as the current funding of £3.125m. This MD proposes that the Mayor grant a delegation to the Executive Director of Housing and Land to authorise (via Director Decisions) increases in the quantum and duration of funding for housing providers, or their partners, or the London VAWG Consortium, should further funding become available.

          Support provided by the housing provider or partner organisation

  1. Where they seek revenue funding from the GLA to fund support provision, housing providers, or their partner organisations, will need to demonstrate that: their intended provision fulfils a range of criteria; they have the necessary skills, expertise and experience; and their approach represents good value for money. GLA officers have produced two documents (one for support for rough sleepers and one for victims of domestic abuse) providing guidance on the scope and requirements for support provision.    
  2.  
  3. It is proposed that, subject to them fulfilling the required criteria, the GLA grant funds housing providers, or their partner organisation, to provide support. This will include support to enable individuals to sustain their tenancy and to move on when they are ready for independent living.

Support for victims of domestic abuse

  1. The housing provider (or a partner organisation) will generally not be providing or securing support for victims of domestic abuse. Alternative arrangements for support will therefore need to be in place for residents of around 60 of the homes that will be delivered and earmarked for this group.
  2.  
  3. A consultant was procured by the GLA in late 2018 to consider, among other things, the best way to deliver support to the forthcoming residents of these homes (DD2290). Following thorough and in-depth consultation with the VAWG sector and other key stakeholders, the most appropriate way forward appears to be through an arrangement whereby a wide range of specialist support providers can be called upon to provide support, as and when appropriate, and taking into account the specific needs of each person.
  4.  
  5. The London VAWG Consortium is well-placed to provide this kind of approach, by harnessing the specialisms and expertise of a wide range of organisations to deliver individualised services to victims of VAWG. It comprises 29 organisations working in partnership to deliver comprehensive, cost effective, high-quality services to all communities across London.
  6.  
  7. It is proposed that the GLA grant funds a lead organisation within the London VAWG Consortium, which would then act as the accountable body for the GLA’s funding. This lead organisation would then distribute smaller grants to organisations within the London VAWG Consortium’s membership, which would provide the necessary support to victims of domestic abuse living in homes delivered through the Move-On Programme.
  8.  
  9. To this end, this lead organisation would work closely with referring refuges to fully assess the needs of the person moving on from the refuge. They would ascertain which organisation from within the London VAWG Consortium’s membership would be best-placed to provide support to that person and would therefore receive grant funding.
Objectives and expected outcomes

The objective of the proposed arrangements is to ensure that the support needs of former rough sleepers and victims of domestic abuse moving into the move-on homes be fully met. In summary, the provision of high quality support will enable people:

• to manage the transition from a hostel, refuge or other emergency accommodation into maintaining their own tenancy;
• to live as independently as possible while in that tenancy; and
• in due course and where appropriate, to move on to more suitable accommodation, such as a into private rented sector accommodation, into general needs social housing, or – for some victims of domestic abuse – to return to their former home.

Outcomes for former rough sleepers will include:

• improved mental and physical health, well-being and resilience;
• greater financial inclusion;
• engagement with treatment, for those with substance misuse needs;
• engagement with employment, education, training, volunteering or meaningful activity;
• a reduction in support needs; and
• move-on to fully independent living.

Outcomes for victims of domestic abuse will include:

• being safer and better-resourced to remain safe;
• improved mental and physical health, well-being and resilience;
• greater financial inclusion;
• secure move-on to safe housing;
• having increased access to justice;
• where children are at risk, those children being identified and referred appropriately;
• engagement with treatment, for those with substance misuse needs;
• engagement with employment, education, training, volunteering or meaningful activity; and
• where appropriate, a reduction in support needs.

Specific targets will be agreed with individual service providers and the London VAWG Consortium, and these will be monitored on a regular basis by the GLA.

Equality comments

Under section 149 of the Equality Act 2010, as public authorities, the Mayor and GLA are subject to a public-sector equality duty and must have ‘due regard’ to the need to (i) eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation; (ii) advance equality of opportunity between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not; and (iii) foster good relations between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not. Protected characteristics under section 149 of the Equality Act are age, disability, gender re-assignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, and marriage or civil partnership status (all except the last being “relevant” protected characteristics).

Of those seen rough sleeping in 2017/18:

• 46 per cent were non-UK nationals;
• 50 per cent had a mental health need;
• 15 per cent were women;
• most of those seen rough sleeping (56 per cent) were in the 26-45 age group;
• eight per cent were under 26 years old;
• 11 per cent were over 55; and
• 11 people were under 18.

Characteristics of victims of domestic abuse (figures are national unless otherwise specified, as there is very little robust London-specific data available):

• gender: women are much more likely than men to be the victims of high risk or severe domestic abuse;
• age: younger people are more likely to be subject to interpersonal violence. Most high-risk victims are in their 20s or 30s. Those under 25 are the most likely to suffer interpersonal violence;
• pregnancy: nearly one in three women who suffer from domestic abuse during their lifetime report that the first incidence of violence happened while they were pregnant;
• separation: domestic abuse is highest amongst those who have separated, followed by those who are divorced or single;
• drug and alcohol use: victims of abuse have a higher rate of drug and/or alcohol misuse (whether it starts before or after the abuse): at least 20 per cent of high-risk victims of abuse report using drugs and/or alcohol;
• mental health: 40 per cent of high-risk victims of abuse report mental health difficulties; and
• ethnicity: around half the people placed in refuges in London are from a BAME group.

Given the above, the proposals in this paper are likely to have positive impacts on a number of groups with protected characteristics. As rough sleepers are over-represented among those with the protected characteristics of race and disability, the proposals are likely to have positive impacts on these groups. In addition, victims of domestic abuse are more likely than the general population to be women, to have mental health support needs and to be from a BAME group.

All organisations receiving grant funding, as well as the London VAWG Consortium, will be required to ensure that:

• equality and diversity considerations are fully taken into account when securing and delivering support to former rough sleepers and victims of domestic abuse, taking into account the specific needs of households, including children; and
• they undertake robust ongoing monitoring of protected characteristics of the people they are supporting and their outcomes, and share this with the GLA on a regular basis.

The GLA will ensure that, as part of their contract management role, they monitor and evaluate data on protected characteristics and outcomes provided by the organisations they are grant funding and the London VAWG Consortium.

Other considerations

a)           Key risks and issues

 

Risk description

 

Rating

Mitigating action

 

Providers being grant-funded may perform poorly

Green

Providers will receive grant funding only if they demonstrate to the GLA that they have the required skills, knowledge, expertise and capacity to provide appropriate and high quality support. Robust grant agreements, rigorous and thorough GLA monitoring and oversight, and excellent relationships between the GLA and providers will ensure that any poor performance is identified and rectified quickly and appropriately.

The quality of support to victims of domestic abuse may be variable and difficult to monitor, given the large number of service providers under the London VAWG Consortium umbrella

Green

The London VAWG Consortium has an excellent track record of providing high quality services and all its members are required to be an accredited member of Women’s Aid or Imkaan.

The co-ordinating organisation will be required to monitor service provision by the member organisations, to ensure that this is achieving the inputs and outcomes set out in the GLA’s service specification (which was drawn up in partnership with the VAWG sector).  

In addition, the GLA Housing and Land Directorate is experienced at contract and performance management and, as with all contracts and grant agreements they oversee, will be ensuring that their monitoring is rigorous and thorough. This will be enhanced by involving external expert VAWG commissioners in the process.

The London VAWG Consortium may be unable to meet the diversity of needs of the victims of domestic abuse being housed through the Move-On Programme.

Green

The Consortium already has a wide and varied membership, reflecting the specialist needs of victims of domestic abuse.  In addition, it seeks out and accepts new members on an ongoing basis, focusing on those that fill gaps in specialisms or offerings to groups with specific needs.

 

b)      Links to Mayoral strategies and priorities

 

The objectives of the proposals are in line with:

  • the Mayor’s London Housing Strategy policy 7.2c; and
  • the Mayor’s Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Strategy.

c)      Impact assessments and consultations.

 

Both the London Housing Strategy and the VAWG Strategy were subject to public consultation and equalities impact assessments.

Thorough and in-depth consultation has been undertaken with the VAWG sector to determine the best way of providing support to victims of domestic abuse accommodated in the move-on homes.

Financial comments

This decision requests approval for expenditure of £3.125m which will be spent as follows:

  • £2.375m to provide grant funding to housing providers, or their partners, to provide support to people accommodated through the Mayor’s Move-On Programme; and
  • £0.750m to provide grant funding to a lead organisation within the London VAWG Consortium to co-ordinate and enable the provision of support to victims of domestic abuse housed through the programme.

 

  1. The grants will be funded by the £3.125m revenue element of £50m allocated by the Mayor for a Move-on programme from funds received from the Government under MD2052.
  2.  
  3. The estimated profile of the spend is set out here:

2019/20

2020/21

2021/22

2022/23

2023/24

Total

£0.477m

£0.737m

£0.741m

£0.741m

£0.429m

£3.125m

 

 

Planned delivery approach and next steps
  1. Housing/support providers seeking grant funding will be required to submit a proposal to the GLA, which will be assessed by the GLA’s Rough Sleeping Team. Subject to the proposal meeting the required criteria, the GLA will issue a long-form grant agreement.
  2.  
  3. The GLA will enter into a grant agreement with a lead organisation for the London VAWG Consortium for the delivery of floating support to victims of domestic abuse living in homes developed through the Move-On Programme.
  4.  
  5. The GLA’s Rough Sleeping Team will monitor and performance manage the grant recipients and, with input from experts in the VAWG sector, the London VAWG Consortium.
  6.  
  7. Outcomes will be reported to the Rough Sleeping Internal Governance Group convened by the Deputy Mayor for Housing and Residential Development.

Grant agreement signed with the London VAWG Consortium lead organisation

May/June 2019

Grant agreements entered into with support providers

From May 2019

Mobilisation

From June/July 2019

Delivery

From July 2019

Contract management, including monitoring meetings for all support providers with the GLA

Quarterly

Delivery end date for the London VAWG Consortium support

31 March 2022

Delivery end date for grant-funded support

31 March 2024


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