News | McCusker: Welfare cuts pushing people into homelessness

McCusker: Welfare cuts pushing people into homelessness

The number of families presenting as homeless have risen by 60% since 2010, an increase that the National Audit Office attributes to Welfare Reform. With benefit sanctions and cuts to housing benefit on the rise, this percentage is set to increase.

Commenting, Cllr Paul McCusker said:

“In North Belfast alone, there are just under 2000 households living in housing stress; given the rising numbers of new housing cases I am coming into contact with daily, I am all too familiar with the effects homelessness can have on people’s lives, particularly their mental well-being.

“Already service providers are struggling to deal with the demand of those who find themselves homeless, given the lack of beds in temporary accommodation and room availability in family hostels, more and more people will be pushed onto the streets”.

In light of these figures being released, SDLP Deputy Leader and housing spokesperson Nichola Mallon MLA said:

“We have a housing crisis across the North, set to be accelerated by the roll-out of Universal Credit and the bedroom tax pending the end of the mitigation package in 2020, and until those who hold the purse strings become less obsessed with balancing the books and more concerned about the people and families behind the statistics, this crisis will only deepen.”   

Cllr Paul McCusker

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