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Canning Town charity boss urges MPs to pass Homelessness Reduction Bill

PUBLISHED: 17:00 26 October 2016 | UPDATED: 17:09 26 October 2016

Keith Fernett talks with residents and ex residents in the communal area of Anchor House in Barking Road.

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A chief executive of a homeless charity has urged MPs to turn up and vote in favour of a bill to reduce homelessness this friday.

The Homelessness Reduction Bill, which will be receiving its second hearing in the House of Commons, would impose duties on councils to prevent homelessness.

Caritas Anchor House boss Keith Fernett said that while the government’s current backing of the bill was “fantastic” there could be no room for “complacency”.

He said: “The bill still needs support at its second hearing and it is vitally important that at least 100 MPs attend the reading and vote in favour of it.

“The Homelessness Reduction Bill has the ability to make the step change needed to tackle homelessness in England.

“It will ensure councils have a duty to prevent and relieve homelessness regardless of priority need, extend the time that households are considered at risk of homelessness from 28 to 56 days, and provide emergency accommodation for people with nowhere safe to stay.

“By doing so, it can improve both the lives of those who the current system is failing.”

Communities Secretary Sajid Javid has already announced that ministers will support the draft legislation being brought forward by Conservative backbench MP Bob Blackman.

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