Councils paying out to house families in B&Bs

HOMELESS North-East families are being placed illegally in bed and breakfast accommodation – at a cost of up to £700 a week to local taxpayers.

Five local authorities are among scores across England that are being forced to use B&Bs for longer than the six-week legal limit.

Labour, which uncovered the information, described the situation as an “absolute disgrace” – blaming the government for a toxic mix of welfare cuts and lack of affordable housing.

Guest houses and hotels are meant to be a short-term solution only – because of the misery for families with children, with nowhere to cook, play, or do homework.

Only last year, ministers insisted only a “small number” of councils were booking B&Bs for longer than the six-week limit. In fact, Labour found 125 that are doing so.

They include:

* Darlington – at a weekly cost of up to £350.

* Stockton-on-Tees – at a weekly cost of up to £398.

* Sunderland – at a weekly cost of up to £700.

* Durham and Redcar and Cleveland – although neither of those two councils provided details.

Across England, the average maximum weekly spend was £650 – but the bill for some local councils in the South is an eye-watering £1,500 or more.

Jack Dromey, Labour’s housing spokesman, said: “It is an absolute disgrace that the number of families with children and pregnant women living in bed and breakfasts for months on end has soared.

“The government’s policies are not just causing desperate hardship for those affected, they’re costing taxpayers millions of pounds every week.”

A spokeswoman for Darlington council said four families had been housed in B&Bs for longer than the six-week limit, since 2010.

She said: “In three of these cases, the families had been allocated permanent properties and in the fourth case the family was rehoused out of the area.

“In all four cases, there were unavoidable delays in the properties being ready for occupation.”

Across England, the number of families in B&Bs beyond six weeks has soared by 800 per cent since the 2010 election – to 880.

In December, housing minister Mark Prisk called in councils with high numbers of homeless families in B&Bs to demand action to “address this unacceptable situation”.

And he hit back at criticism by insisting the government had “invested £470m funding to ensure we continue to have some of the strongest protections in the world against homelessness”.

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Comments (11)

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11:41am Fri 22 Feb 13

Homshaw1 says...

When I look in Letting Agency windows there is plenty of property to rent and six weeks is more than enough time to sort something out

If it were their money they would not waste it like this
When I look in Letting Agency windows there is plenty of property to rent and six weeks is more than enough time to sort something out If it were their money they would not waste it like this Homshaw1

2:17pm Fri 22 Feb 13

st-george1 says...

... at a time when Premier Inns and Travelogues and small hotels or even Costas holiday rooms can be as low as £140 per week and even less if booked more in advance … but as expected R&C Council has refused to talk about, a rather suspicious response that could suggest there might just be something more sinister going on !
… at least Labour’s Mr Dromey noticed that his party’s long-term neglected and homeless people are being a shown a little more love and attention by some OTHER party, something that Marxism and Labour does not permit …
... at a time when Premier Inns and Travelogues and small hotels or even Costas holiday rooms can be as low as £140 per week and even less if booked more in advance … but as expected R&C Council has refused to talk about, a rather suspicious response that could suggest there might just be something more sinister going on ! … at least Labour’s Mr Dromey noticed that his party’s long-term neglected and homeless people are being a shown a little more love and attention by some OTHER party, something that Marxism and Labour does not permit … st-george1

3:07pm Fri 22 Feb 13

Mod says...

Mr Dromey --- husband of Harriet Harman --- now how did he get the job?
Oh that's right, Labour abandoned their "women only" list of candidates for a Labour safe seat so Mr Dromey could be elected. "Fairness and equality" the message of Labour.
Mr Dromey --- husband of Harriet Harman --- now how did he get the job? Oh that's right, Labour abandoned their "women only" list of candidates for a Labour safe seat so Mr Dromey could be elected. "Fairness and equality" the message of Labour. Mod

3:59pm Fri 22 Feb 13

Mike2012 says...

Unbeleivable. This 'news'paper gets more left-wing every day!
Unbeleivable. This 'news'paper gets more left-wing every day! Mike2012

10:17pm Fri 22 Feb 13

Jonn says...

Wonderful. These cuts to save money really are working aren't they. At least our triple A rating is safe, phew!
Wonderful. These cuts to save money really are working aren't they. At least our triple A rating is safe, phew! Jonn

10:21pm Fri 22 Feb 13

Jonn says...

Oops. Spoke to soon. We now have an Aa1 rating.
Oops. Spoke to soon. We now have an Aa1 rating. Jonn

12:14am Sat 23 Feb 13

Davidwillis says...

This is why housing reform is needed. It can't be an endless blank check. If labour had won the last election we'd have lost our AAA rating by August 2010 and the country would end up in economic ruin with us unable to afford any welfare state. The last government completely FUBAR the countries finances and it'll take over a decade to recover who Evers in power. But labour and this loony left wing paper are in denial of this and think we can spend our way out of every situation.
This is why housing reform is needed. It can't be an endless blank check. If labour had won the last election we'd have lost our AAA rating by August 2010 and the country would end up in economic ruin with us unable to afford any welfare state. The last government completely FUBAR the countries finances and it'll take over a decade to recover who Evers in power. But labour and this loony left wing paper are in denial of this and think we can spend our way out of every situation. Davidwillis

8:57am Sat 23 Feb 13

Mike2012 says...

Davidwillis wrote:
This is why housing reform is needed. It can't be an endless blank check. If labour had won the last election we'd have lost our AAA rating by August 2010 and the country would end up in economic ruin with us unable to afford any welfare state. The last government completely FUBAR the countries finances and it'll take over a decade to recover who Evers in power. But labour and this loony left wing paper are in denial of this and think we can spend our way out of every situation.
^^ amen.
[quote][p][bold]Davidwillis[/bold] wrote: This is why housing reform is needed. It can't be an endless blank check. If labour had won the last election we'd have lost our AAA rating by August 2010 and the country would end up in economic ruin with us unable to afford any welfare state. The last government completely FUBAR the countries finances and it'll take over a decade to recover who Evers in power. But labour and this loony left wing paper are in denial of this and think we can spend our way out of every situation.[/p][/quote]^^ amen. Mike2012

3:59pm Sun 24 Feb 13

the-big-yin says...

POLITICS SUCKS.!!!!!
IS IT NOT TIME FOR ALL PARTIES TO DROP THE B.U.L.L.S.H.I.T. AND START TO CONCENTRATE ON GETTING THIS COUNTRY BACK TO WHERE IT ONCE WAS.
ANYONE UNEMPLOYED BACK INTO WORK OR TRAINING. NO IFS OR BUTS.
ANYONE CAUGHT FIDDLING THE BENEFITS SYSTEM GETS IT TAKEN AWAY FROM THEM.
STOP ALL THE FREE BUS PASSES TO ALCOHOLICS AND DRUG USERS.
STOP THE MOBILITY SCHEME FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE FIDDLING THAT. *** I AM SICK TO DEATH OF SEEING PEOPLE WHO PULL THE WOOL OVER DOCTORS EYES, SO THAT THEY CAN CLAIM FOR A FREE MOBILITY CAR.
STOP ALL THE LIGHT SENTENCES FOR CRIMINALS.
START BUILDING HOUSES AGAIN AND EASE THE PLANNING LAWS WHICH TAKE TOO LONG.
LANDLORDS OF PROPERTIES SHOULD HAVE ALL THEIR RENT PAYMENTS REASSESSED. THE MONEY PAID TO THESE ARE FAR TOO HIGH.
STOP THE BUY TO LET MORTGAGES. WHY SHOULD HOUSING BENEFIT PAY FOR THESE PEOPLE TO BUY THESE TYPE OF PROPERTIES.
HELP THE N.H.S. BY CHARGING ANYONE WITH DRINK RELATED PROBLEMS FOR THE TIME SPENT USING HOSPITALS.
ALSO HAVE A ZERO POLICY ON CRIME NO MATTER HOW TRIVIAL IT IS.
STAMP DOWN ON THE BLIGHT OF ALL COMMUNITIES WHICH IS DRUG DEALING AND ANTI SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR
TIME TO LOCK ALL DRUG DEALERS AND USERS UP.
IF REHAB DOES NOT WORK FOR THEM IN JAIL AND THEY COMMIT ANOTHER CRIME WHEN OUT, THEN LOCK THEM UP AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN.
***** REPORT ALL BENEFIT CHEATS *****
POLITICS SUCKS.!!!!! IS IT NOT TIME FOR ALL PARTIES TO DROP THE B.U.L.L.S.H.I.T. AND START TO CONCENTRATE ON GETTING THIS COUNTRY BACK TO WHERE IT ONCE WAS. ANYONE UNEMPLOYED BACK INTO WORK OR TRAINING. NO IFS OR BUTS. ANYONE CAUGHT FIDDLING THE BENEFITS SYSTEM GETS IT TAKEN AWAY FROM THEM. STOP ALL THE FREE BUS PASSES TO ALCOHOLICS AND DRUG USERS. STOP THE MOBILITY SCHEME FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE FIDDLING THAT. *** I AM SICK TO DEATH OF SEEING PEOPLE WHO PULL THE WOOL OVER DOCTORS EYES, SO THAT THEY CAN CLAIM FOR A FREE MOBILITY CAR. STOP ALL THE LIGHT SENTENCES FOR CRIMINALS. START BUILDING HOUSES AGAIN AND EASE THE PLANNING LAWS WHICH TAKE TOO LONG. LANDLORDS OF PROPERTIES SHOULD HAVE ALL THEIR RENT PAYMENTS REASSESSED. THE MONEY PAID TO THESE ARE FAR TOO HIGH. STOP THE BUY TO LET MORTGAGES. WHY SHOULD HOUSING BENEFIT PAY FOR THESE PEOPLE TO BUY THESE TYPE OF PROPERTIES. HELP THE N.H.S. BY CHARGING ANYONE WITH DRINK RELATED PROBLEMS FOR THE TIME SPENT USING HOSPITALS. ALSO HAVE A ZERO POLICY ON CRIME NO MATTER HOW TRIVIAL IT IS. STAMP DOWN ON THE BLIGHT OF ALL COMMUNITIES WHICH IS DRUG DEALING AND ANTI SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR TIME TO LOCK ALL DRUG DEALERS AND USERS UP. IF REHAB DOES NOT WORK FOR THEM IN JAIL AND THEY COMMIT ANOTHER CRIME WHEN OUT, THEN LOCK THEM UP AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN. ***** REPORT ALL BENEFIT CHEATS ***** the-big-yin

6:16pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Mike2012 says...

Absolutely SPOT ON! I'm sure everyone agrees with every single point made...... All it seems lately is the main parties bending over backwards to score cheap points off each other without actually getting together and sorting the mess out once and for all, look at the Australian PM for an example of a great leader who isn't afraid to stand up to anyone.
Absolutely SPOT ON! I'm sure everyone agrees with every single point made...... All it seems lately is the main parties bending over backwards to score cheap points off each other without actually getting together and sorting the mess out once and for all, look at the Australian PM for an example of a great leader who isn't afraid to stand up to anyone. Mike2012

9:23am Wed 27 Feb 13

Bunnie17 says...

the-big-yin wrote:
POLITICS SUCKS.!!!!!
IS IT NOT TIME FOR ALL PARTIES TO DROP THE B.U.L.L.S.H.I.T. AND START TO CONCENTRATE ON GETTING THIS COUNTRY BACK TO WHERE IT ONCE WAS.
ANYONE UNEMPLOYED BACK INTO WORK OR TRAINING. NO IFS OR BUTS.
ANYONE CAUGHT FIDDLING THE BENEFITS SYSTEM GETS IT TAKEN AWAY FROM THEM.
STOP ALL THE FREE BUS PASSES TO ALCOHOLICS AND DRUG USERS.
STOP THE MOBILITY SCHEME FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE FIDDLING THAT. *** I AM SICK TO DEATH OF SEEING PEOPLE WHO PULL THE WOOL OVER DOCTORS EYES, SO THAT THEY CAN CLAIM FOR A FREE MOBILITY CAR.
STOP ALL THE LIGHT SENTENCES FOR CRIMINALS.
START BUILDING HOUSES AGAIN AND EASE THE PLANNING LAWS WHICH TAKE TOO LONG.
LANDLORDS OF PROPERTIES SHOULD HAVE ALL THEIR RENT PAYMENTS REASSESSED. THE MONEY PAID TO THESE ARE FAR TOO HIGH.
STOP THE BUY TO LET MORTGAGES. WHY SHOULD HOUSING BENEFIT PAY FOR THESE PEOPLE TO BUY THESE TYPE OF PROPERTIES.
HELP THE N.H.S. BY CHARGING ANYONE WITH DRINK RELATED PROBLEMS FOR THE TIME SPENT USING HOSPITALS.
ALSO HAVE A ZERO POLICY ON CRIME NO MATTER HOW TRIVIAL IT IS.
STAMP DOWN ON THE BLIGHT OF ALL COMMUNITIES WHICH IS DRUG DEALING AND ANTI SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR
TIME TO LOCK ALL DRUG DEALERS AND USERS UP.
IF REHAB DOES NOT WORK FOR THEM IN JAIL AND THEY COMMIT ANOTHER CRIME WHEN OUT, THEN LOCK THEM UP AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN.
***** REPORT ALL BENEFIT CHEATS *****
I totally agree well said .
[quote][p][bold]the-big-yin[/bold] wrote: POLITICS SUCKS.!!!!! IS IT NOT TIME FOR ALL PARTIES TO DROP THE B.U.L.L.S.H.I.T. AND START TO CONCENTRATE ON GETTING THIS COUNTRY BACK TO WHERE IT ONCE WAS. ANYONE UNEMPLOYED BACK INTO WORK OR TRAINING. NO IFS OR BUTS. ANYONE CAUGHT FIDDLING THE BENEFITS SYSTEM GETS IT TAKEN AWAY FROM THEM. STOP ALL THE FREE BUS PASSES TO ALCOHOLICS AND DRUG USERS. STOP THE MOBILITY SCHEME FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE FIDDLING THAT. *** I AM SICK TO DEATH OF SEEING PEOPLE WHO PULL THE WOOL OVER DOCTORS EYES, SO THAT THEY CAN CLAIM FOR A FREE MOBILITY CAR. STOP ALL THE LIGHT SENTENCES FOR CRIMINALS. START BUILDING HOUSES AGAIN AND EASE THE PLANNING LAWS WHICH TAKE TOO LONG. LANDLORDS OF PROPERTIES SHOULD HAVE ALL THEIR RENT PAYMENTS REASSESSED. THE MONEY PAID TO THESE ARE FAR TOO HIGH. STOP THE BUY TO LET MORTGAGES. WHY SHOULD HOUSING BENEFIT PAY FOR THESE PEOPLE TO BUY THESE TYPE OF PROPERTIES. HELP THE N.H.S. BY CHARGING ANYONE WITH DRINK RELATED PROBLEMS FOR THE TIME SPENT USING HOSPITALS. ALSO HAVE A ZERO POLICY ON CRIME NO MATTER HOW TRIVIAL IT IS. STAMP DOWN ON THE BLIGHT OF ALL COMMUNITIES WHICH IS DRUG DEALING AND ANTI SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR TIME TO LOCK ALL DRUG DEALERS AND USERS UP. IF REHAB DOES NOT WORK FOR THEM IN JAIL AND THEY COMMIT ANOTHER CRIME WHEN OUT, THEN LOCK THEM UP AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN. ***** REPORT ALL BENEFIT CHEATS *****[/p][/quote]I totally agree well said . Bunnie17

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