Housing and Homelessness
Locally, we have highlighted the issue of homelessness because we are concerned about the number of people – especially young single people – who are coming to us with nowhere to live We understand from the council that there has been a 200% increase in homelessness applications due to the tax changes for buy-to let landlords which come into effect in April. If, as is likely, the private rented sector shrinks, there may be an increase in clients in housing need.
We have regular meetings with council officers and we discuss and try to resolve housing and homelessness issues. We are also part of the Homelessness Forum, which brings a number of agencies working in the Borough together. We all recognise that the lack of affordable housing and high rental costs in Wokingham Borough make it difficult for anyone on limited means to find a suitable place to rent. However, by working together we feel we are able to contribute by highlighting the acute difficulties some of our clients face.
If you have experienced problems with finding somewhere to live and want to share your experience please fill in this form and we will contact you.
Communication with Government Agencies
Communicating with government agencies such as the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), the Job Centre or HMRC continues to be raised by clients as a serious problem. This can be the time taken to get through on “helplines” or the difficulties of being understood of of finding a knowledgeable official to speak to in person. We share these frustrations and we are working with the various departments to try and make access for people easier. We are also working to find out whether closing down local offices has really cut costs or increased efficiency.
If you have experienced difficulties with communicating with government agencies and want to share your experience please fill in this form and we will contact you.