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When everyone has a home

028 9024 5640: Housing & Debt Helpline for Northern Ireland

Advising young homeless people

The Housing Executive and the regional Health and Social Care Trusts have agreed on good practice guidance for assisting homeless young people.  The guidance, signed off earlier this year, is an attempt to ensure that young people in crisis receive the assistance they need as quickly as possible.  Agencies who provide advice to young people should ensure that they know which agency is responsible for assisting young people in crisis.  

A homeless young person may have a right to be provided with accommodation by either Social Services or the Housing Executive. In order to ensure that vulnerable young people receive a joined-up, appropriate service, these organisations have agreed on good practice guidance, which outlines the procedures that should be followed if a young person presents as homeless. Regardless of which agency is initially approached by a young person, both organisations should work together to ensure that the guidance is followed in the best interests of the young person. The specific steps to be followed will depend on the age of the young person

Understanding the guidance

Housing Rights is running training seminars on this guidance in the coming weeks. The seminar will focus on the new regional guidance in a housing context and will investigate:

  • how the guidance relates to the  Children (NI) Order 1995 
  • the key definitions contained within the guidance 
  • how the NI system differs from those which operate in England and Wales
  • the categories of young people and the duties owed to each
  • how to challenge a failure by the NIHE or  a Health and Social Care Trust to follow the guidance.

Attending the seminar

This course will be of particular importance to housing advisers, organisations who work with young people, community groups, political party constituency offices, private, social and hostel accommodation providers and the legal profession.

Tagged In

Practical tips, Homelessness