2013 2018 North West Regional Homelessness Action Plan

2013 2018 North West Regional Homelessness Action Plan

2013 2018 North West Regional Homelessness Action Plan

North West Regional Homelessness Action Plan 2013 – 2018 Counties Donegal, Leitrim & Sligo April 2013

NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. Introduction - North West Regional Homelessness Action Plan 5 Review Background/Context 6 1.1 Terms of Reference 7 2. Approach 9 2.2 Strategic Referencing 10 2.2.1 De-institutionalisation . . 10 2.2.2 Homelessness - An Integrated Strategy (DoEC&LG) January 2001 . 12 2.2.3 Homelessness Preventative Strategy DH&C, DE&S, DE&H&LE February 2002 . 13 2.2.4 Review of Implementation of Homelessness Strategies January 2006 .

13 2.2.5 The Way Home: Strategy 2008 – 2013 . . 14 2.2.6 Delivering Homes, Sustaining Communities . . 14 2.2.7 Housing in the Region . . 14 2.2.8 Rental Accommodation Scheme . 15 2.2.9 Guidelines 2009 . 15 2.2.10 Settlement Services in Europe – Lessons for Ireland Brian Harvey 1998 . . 16 The Normalisation Model . 17 The Tiered Model . 17 The Staircase of Transition Model . 17 Perception and Assessment of Homeless People’s Capacities for independent living . 17 2.2.11 Throughcare Model of Practice . . 18 2.3 HSE Specific Responsibilities regarding Homelessness 18 Homeless Services Performance Improvement - HSE West Service Plan 2013 .

. 18 2.3.1 Values and principles . . 19 2.4 Early Intervention 20 2.5 Data Collection on Homelessness in the North West 22 Conclusion . . 24 Assessment of Housing Need . . 27 2.6 Demographics – North West 28 Population Density . . 28 3. Examination and Review of Homelessness Services in the North West 31 3.1 Emergency Accommodation 32 3.1.1 St Colmcille Hostel Letterkenny . . 32 Referral Source . . 33 Contributory Factors to Presentation . . 33 Housing Outcome . . 34 Finance . . 34 3.1.2 Maryville Hostel Sligo . . 35 Hostel Profile . . 35 Age Distribution . . 36 Frequency of Admission . . 36 Referral Source .

. 37 Length of Stay . . 37 Place of Origin . . 37 Finance . . 37 3.1.3 Ballytivnan . 38 3.2 Refuges for Women & Children 38 3.2.1 Donegal Women’s Domestic Violence Service . 39 3.2.2 Domestic Violence Advocacy Service . 40 Activity Summary . 40 3.3 Transitional/Long-Term Housing 40 3.3.1 Shalomar Hostel Finisklin Housing Association Sligo . . 41 Age Distribution . 41 Length of Stay . . 42 Resources . . 42 3.3.2 Supported Housing Sligo Focus Ireland . . 42 TABLE OF CONTENTS

NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 TABLE OF CONTENTS Gender Mix . . 43 Age Distribution . . 43 Place of Origin . . 43 Reasons for Referral . . 43 Level of Support . . 44 Sustainability . . 44 3.3.3 Whiteoaks Rehabilitation Centre . 44 3.3.4 Maryville Annexe (SSSC . 45 3.3.5 Charles Street . 45 3.3.6 Low Support Housing NW Simon . 46 Gender Mix . 46 Referral Period . 46 Previous Address Type . 46 Key Working and Care Plan . . 47 3.4 Resettlement and Tenancy Support 47 3.4.1 Cranmore Estate TSS . 48 3.4.2 North West Simon Regional TSS . 48 Referrals . 48 Referral Source .

48 Level of Support . . 49 Last Address Type . . 49 3.4.3 Focus Ireland TSS Sligo Town and County . 49 3.4.4 Sligo Social Services TSS . 49 3.5 Homelessness Services in County Leitrim 49 3.6 Other Services 51 3.6.1 Information & Advice Service SSSC Sligo . 51 3.6.2 B & B and Deposits . . 52 Donegal . . 52 Leitrim . . 52 Sligo . . 52 3.6.3 Local Authority Staffing for Homelessness . . 52 Donegal . . 52 Leitrim . . 52 Sligo . . 52 4. Co-ordination of Services in the North West 54 5. Funding Comparison 55 6. Current Homelessness Plans in North West 56 7. Discussion & Recommendations 58 7.1 Demographics 58 7.2 Service Provision 59 7.2.1 Emergency Services .

59 Emergency Sector . . 59 St. Colmcille Hostel Letterkenny . 60 Maryville Hostel Sligo . . 61 Ballytivnan . . 61 7.2.2 Refuge Services . . 61 7.2.3 Transitional/Long-Term Accommodation . . 61 Whiteoaks Donegal . . 61 Maryville Annexe Sligo . . 62 Shalomar FHA Sligo . . 62 Focus Ireland Long-Term . . 62 7.2.4 Resettlement/Tenancy Support . 62 7.2.5 Current Regional Funding Proposals . 63 7.3 Management of Strategy 63 7.3.1 Homeless Action Teams . 64 7.3.2 Throughcare Model . . 66 7.3.3 Service Level Agreements . . 66 7.3.4 Data Management . 67 7.3.5 Skillsets . 67 ‘Front Door’ Services . .

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NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 TABLE OF CONTENTS 8. Action Plan Aims & Objectives 68 8.1 Strategic Aims 68 8.2 Objectives 68 8.2.1 Emergency Sector . 68 8.2.2 Women’s and Children’s Domestic Violence Residential Services . 70 8.2.3 Transitional/Long-Term Sector . 70 8.2.4 Resettlement/TSS Sector . 71 8.3 Conclusion - Monitoring and Evaluation 72

NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 CHAPTER 1 - INTRODUCTION 1. INTRODUCTION - NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN In accordance with the provisions of Chapter 6 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009, Housing Authorities are responsible for the adoption of Homelessness Action Plans.

Having regard to current economic and administrative circumstances and existing regional arrangements, it was concluded that a regional approach would be the most appropriate. The Regional Fora are based on the statutory local government regions, with the internal division of the Border region into North East and North West regions.

The role of the North West Joint Homelessness Consultative Forum is to provide a consultative mechanism in relation to homelessness, particularly in the context of the statutory Homelessness Action Plan. The Management Group has primary responsibility for the preparation of the Plan and has the function of making recommendations to relevant statutory bodies on homeless services, including funding. A key role of the Management Group is to prepare, approve and submit the draft plan, following required consultation, to each Housing Authority in the Region for adoption and to review the Plan and make recommendations in relation to its operation to the Housing Authorities, the HSE and other relevant Statutory Bodies specified in section 36 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009.

In terms of consultation the Management Group is required to ensure, as a minimum, compliance with the consultation required by section 40(2) of the Act with other members of the Forum and Town Councils within the Region. The Management Group also has the ongoing statutory function of making recommendations to these bodies in relation to homeless services and funding for such services, taking account of financial resources.

The Draft Plan must be approved by the Management Group and submitted to each of the relevant Housing Authorities for subsequent adoption by the Elected Council. The single Regional Plan must be adopted by each of the Authorities forming the Region. Section 40(8) provides for a default process whereby, in the event of the Plan not being adopted (with or without modification) by a particular Council within the period of six weeks after its initial submission, the Manager of the Housing Authority concerned shall by order adopt the Plan.

In terms of the format and content of the Action Plan, Section 37 (2) of the 2009 Act provides that the Plan shall specify measures to be undertaken to address homelessness to achieve the objectives of preventing homelessness, reducing homelessness in its extent or duration, provision of services to homeless persons, provision of assistance as necessary (e.g.

support services) to persons who were formerly homeless (i.e. who are making a transition to independent living) and promotion of effective co-ordination among all the bodies represented on the Forum. Section 37 also provides that the Plan should be informed by available data, the costs of measures and likely financial resources, as well as Government policies and objectives.

Subject to the statutory provisions, it is a matter for each Management Group, in consultation with the Joint Homelessness Consultative Forum, to determine the particular format and content of the plan for the region. The Local Authorities of Counties Donegal, Leitrim and Sligo established the need for a comprehensive, independent review of homeless services in the North West Region leading to the generation of the Action Plan for the five-year period 2013 – 2018.

NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 CHAPTER 1 - INTRODUCTION The Action Plan follows the detailed review of the services in place in 2012, which address homelessness in the Region.

The review itself, which was undertaken on behalf of the Management Group by Murtagh & Partners, Social & Economic Consultants, involved primary research including interviews with key stakeholders. These included the voluntary service providers in the North West, statutory services commissioners and agencies involved with service provision generally, including the key agencies which manage services and provide the funding support, the Local Authorities and HSE West. Secondary research was also carried out which involved collating and analysing Service User data for the 2011 calendar year using a number of key indicators measuring outcomes and service effectiveness.

The funding of services for 2011 was also collated and analysed. The review analysis presents a comprehensive Regional profile of people presenting as homeless, service provision across the key sectors, Emergency, Domestic Violence Services, Transitional/Long- Term Accommodation, Resettlement/Tenancy Sustainment and support services by Local Authorities. The review assessed the performance and outcomes from current service provision within the framework of the Normalisation and Throughcare Models and against the aims and objectives of current Government policy.

Recommendations arising from the review process were discussed, and formed the basis for a range of high level and operational objectives which now form the basis for the North West Regional Homelessness Action Plan 2013 – 2018. The Review and consultative process was managed by a sub- group of the Management Group which met frequently between November 2012 and January 2013 to monitor progress and assess the outcomes. Consultation also took place with the North West Joint Homelessness Consultative Forum and the relevant Town Councils and submissions were considered as part of the review of the Plan.

Arising from this process, inaccuracies in the data were updated. Given that the Action Plan is informed by the Review, the Plan incorporates the content and findings of the Review in terms of Approach, Examination and Review of Homelessness Services in the North West, Co-ordination of Services, Funding Comparison, Current Homelessness Plan in the North West and Discussion and Recommendations, with the Action Plan Aims and Objectives set out in Section 8. REVIEW BACKGROUND/CONTEXT In accordance with the provisions of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009, Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal Local Authorities adopted the North West Regional Homelessness Framework Action Plan in June 2010.

The Plan was developed in conjunction with the Health Services Executive, in the context of the Government’s Strategy on Homelessness - The Way Home - A Strategy to Address Adult Homelessness 2008-2013 and National Implementation Plan, and contains six strategic aims as follows:  To prevent homelessness  To eliminate the need to sleep rough  To eliminate long term homelessness  To meet long term housing needs  To ensure effective services  To co-ordinate funding arrangements The Local Authorities in the North West work in partnership with the voluntary and co-operative housing sector to provide many residential and homeless services and have good relationships with these groups throughout the region.

NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 CHAPTER 1 - INTRODUCTION The Framework Action Plan1 and detailed Implementation Blueprint of regional homelessness services were prepared by the Management Group of the North West Joint Homelessness Consultative Forum (NWJHCF), in consultation with the Consultative Forum and completed in June 2011. The Management Group of the North West Joint Homelessness Consultative Forum (The Management Group) commissioned a review and, where appropriate, amendment of the Homelessness Action Plan and associated Implementation Blueprint. In this context it was considered appropriate that a comprehensive independent review of Homeless Services in the Region was undertaken, together with a review of the current Plan and Blueprint, with the outcomes forming the basis for any necessary amendment of the Plan and Blueprint.

The Management Group of the NWJHCF invited proposals from appropriately qualified Consultants with relevant experience to carry out the Review and Murtagh & Partners (M & P) was subsequently appointed. 1.1 TERMS OF REFERENCE The Terms of Reference (TOR) issued by the Management Group and responded to by way of a proposal from M & P contained a number of components which are detailed below2 . 1. Examination and review of the scope and extent of homelessness in the North West Region (Sligo, Leitrim & Donegal) to include: a. an overview of trends of homelessness in the region including prevalence and incidence b.

Profile of homelessness in recent years by age, gender, family status and place of origin 2. Examination and review of the delivery of Homeless Services in the Region (Sligo, Leitrim & Donegal) to include: a. a detailed audit of current service provision including structures, finance and outcomes b. a review of funding provision within the region relative to service provision c. a review of funding provision to the region relative to similar service provision nationally d. examination/review to include face to face consultation meetings with the key stakeholders including Service Providers, HSE, Local Authorities and Voluntary agencies e.

profile the existing services, identify gaps and make outline recommendations for future service configuration 3. Appraise the extent of co-ordination between homeless services in the region and recommend ways to maximise co-ordination to achieve person/family centred and seamless services 4. Examination of North West Regional Homelessness Framework Action Plan 2010-2013 and Implementation Blueprint 2011-2013 in terms of appropriateness and effectiveness to include: 1 North West Regional Framework Homelessness Framework Plan Implementation Blueprint 2011 - 2013 2 Project Brief Management Group NWJHCF October 2012

NORTH WEST REGIONAL HOMELESSNESS ACTION PLAN 2013-2018 CHAPTER 1 - INTRODUCTION a. assessment and analysis of progress in relation to the achievement of strategic aims b. determination as to whether and how the Plan and/or Blueprint requires review/amendment 5. Preparation, as necessary, of draft amended Regional Framework Action Plan and Implementation Blueprint for the period 2013-2018 informed by the outcomes of Items 1-4 above The Review was carried out in accordance with the regional dimension of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009 and in line with the subsequent guidelines issued by the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government for such reviews.

The Government’s current strategy to address homelessness, The Way Home: A Strategy to Address Adult Homelessness in Ireland 2008 – 2013 and recent initiatives and developments by the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government including the Rental Accommodation Scheme (RAS) and Support to Live Independently (SLI) provide the essential rationale for the Review at a national level. At a local level, the homeless and housing policies of each of the three Local Authorities provide essential strategic reference points, in addition to the key elements of the Framework Plan 2010 – 2013.

The review of services in the North West specifically addresses the key recommendations of the National Plan for Homelessness which has set out the development of integrated working structures by key stakeholders for the provision of services and supports for homeless people. Central to this approach is the need to provide a comprehensive continuum of appropriate services of a wrap-around nature to homeless people to be delivered in a seamless and integrated way with the ultimate outcome being their return to independent living. The services’ continuum commences on the onset of homelessness and follows the person’s successful return to independent living in most cases.

In a minority of cases, transitional housing or other supported accommodation may be the appropriate provision. The roles of prevention and tenancy sustainment are also examined.