Young seek help over homelessness

| 11 September 2007

Housing and homelessness are the main reasons why disadvantaged young people reach out to youth advice services, a report by Youth Access has found.

The youth organisation's report Locked Out: Young People's Housing and Homelessness Needs found young people account for a disproportionate amount of the rented housing and homelessness problems experienced by the population as a whole. Nevertheless, it also found young people are less likely than other age groups to seek out advice on their homelessness problems. Young people aged between 15 and 17 are at the peak age to have housing difficulties.

James Kenrick, advice services development manager at Youth Access, said government policy had, until recently, largely ignored young people's housing needs, pointing out the recent Youth Matters strategy made no references to housing and only one to homelessness.

However, he said the Department for Communities and Local Government's Youth Homelessness Strategy had positive elements, including a focus on early prevention and advice. "Current initiatives offer the potential to make progress," he said.

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