Charity urges new government to act for homeless

 The Catholic Housing Aid Society (CHAS) is calling for the UK's newly-elected government to act quickly on homelessness. Shortly before the election, the Homes Bill, a piece of legislation which would have given local authorities much more responsibility to care for homeless people, was shelved, in the run-up to the election. Robina Rafferty, MBE, director of CHAS, said: "We look forward to working with the new administration and sincerely hope that the Homes Bill will now be made a high priority." She said: "Catholic social teaching and the Bishops' statement, The Common Good, gives us a vision of a 'good and fair society', where 'each person possesses a basic dignity that comes from God' and 'people who are poor and vulnerable have a special place'. The test of every institution or policy is whether it enhances or threatens human dignity.' Homeless people are some of the most vulnerable in our society. The experience of homelessness deprives thousands of their dignity and self-esteem." Dr Joanna Disson, CHAS policy and research officer, said she saw no reason why another proposed ruling, scrapped in the pre-election rush (the extension of priority need categories giving support to 16 and 17 year olds, young people leaving care homes aged 18-21 and other vulnerable categories) should not go ahead without delay.

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