On Wednesday this week I spoke in a debate about an important – but often hidden – aspect of homelessness, temporary accommodation.
When people talk about homelessness, they are often mean rough sleeping. In fact, rough sleepers only make up a small part of the homeless population in this country.
By this time last year, there were almost 90,000 homeless households in temporary accommodation in the UK, with almost 130,000 children. This housing is called temporary, but far too often people spend months or years in this accommodation. In many cases conditions are unsafe, cramped and unhealthy – and the coronavirus pandemic will only make these conditions worse.
In the debate, I argued we need genuinely affordable housing in this country. In one of the richest countries in the world, it is a scandal that thousands of children are growing up in such squalid conditions.
Watch my speech here.