The Department does not hold information on the number of victims of domestic abuse who have slept rough and experienced homelessness in each of the last five years.
However, we know that in 2017/18, 1,330 households were accepted as homeless with the primary reason of acceptance being that they were vulnerable as a result of having fled their home because of domestic violence or the threat of domestic violence. These statistics are available for each local authority area, and previous years at:
Domestic abuse is a devastating crime that nobody should have to suffer. Supporting victims of domestic abuse is an absolute priority for this Government. Councils have a legal duty to provide accommodation to families and others who are vulnerable as a result of fleeing domestic abuse. The Homelessness Reduction Act requires councils to take reasonable steps for all eligible households who are homeless, to help them secure accommodation.
We are overhauling the statutory homelessness data collection alongside the introduction of the Homelessness Reduction Act. This will give us better insights into the causes of homelessness and the support people need, including where someone is accepted as homeless because they were vulnerable as a result of having fled their home because of domestic violence or the threat of domestic violence, alongside other reasons for acceptance.
We are also continuing to support the Women’s Aid Routes to Support and No Woman Turned Away projects, having already provided almost £889,000 between 2015 and 2018 for these projects. Routes to Support (formerly UK Refuges online) is part-funded by the Government and is a UK-wide online database containing information about domestic abuse and other violence against women services. No Woman Turned Away provides caseworker support to women facing difficulties in accessing refuge, including those at risk of or who have been sleeping rough or experiencing homelessness.
We have also commissioned an audit of domestic abuse service delivery - being run by Ipsos MORI – to give us a picture of provision across England, enabling us to understand what impact services are having and to identify gaps in provision.