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March 5, 2007

Question written on 05/03/2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the effect of A2 and A8 migration on (a) homelessness and (b) measures to tackle homelessness in the UK.

Answered by Yvette Cooper

Statistics about English local housing authorities’ activity under the homelessness legislation are collected and published quarterly. Between May 2004 and September 2006, 615 housing applicants who were nationals of one of the eight eastern European countries that acceded to the EU on 1 May 2004 were accepted as eligible, unintentionally homeless and in priority need, and consequently owed a main homelessness duty by local housing authorities in England. This comprises 0.25 per cent. of the total number of applicants accepted over the 29 month period.The first set of data covering the period since the accession of Bulgaria and Romania to the EU will be quarter 1 (JanuaryMarch) 2007, which will be available in June.Communities and Local Government and the Home Office have given 497,000 to date to central London local authorities to support their work with the small number of people from the accession states who end up sleeping rough on the streets. The Home Office recently announced further funding of 107,000 in 2007-08 for Westminster city council.