HL Deb 01 March 1999 vol 597 cc153-4WA
Lord Eames

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their estimate of the number of people sleeping on the streets in Northern Ireland; and whether they consider sufficient efforts have been made to eradicate this problem. [HL1066]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office (Lord Dubs)

This is a matter for the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, whose Chief Executive has advised me that research to date has failed to find evidence of a "rough sleeping" problem in Northern Ireland. Since July 1998, the executive has been participating in an inter agency steering group overseeing a "street outreach service" in Belfast. A socio-geographic assessment of those using the service will assist with early identification of examples of "rough sleeping" problems and inform decisions on whether any further research or action may be necessary.