Get help from Social Services with your housing

Social services may have to help if you are homeless and you come under one of the following criteria;

  • you are under 18
  • you are leaving care or you’re under 21 and have previously been in care
  • you are an elderly person
  • you have physical or mental health problems
  • you have problems with drug or alcohol dependency
  • you have a disability
  • you are responsible for a child under 16
  • you are an asylum seeker under 18 and you have no one to look after you
  • you are seeking asylum
  • you have overstayed your visa, have health problems and have a low income.

If you apply to the council as homeless, they may place you in a bed and breakfast (B&B) accommodation while they look at your case. Many people are not aware that it is against the law for councils to keep homeless families or pregnant women in B&Bs for more than 6 weeks. Councils should only place you in this type of accommodation if no other accommodation is available.

You may be offered accommodation or money to help pay for this accommodation.  The level of help you get usually depends on your personal circumstances, the cost of any help and what services are available in your area.

Parents are often worried about contacting Social Services because of the shame attached.  Social Services can only take children away from their parents if they can show a child has suffered or is likely to suffer significant harm.  In accommodation offered by Social Services parents can sometimes be housed separately to their children but this will only happen if you agree to it and you have the right to say no. Social Services have a duty to provide accommodation or financial support to families with ‘children in need’ therefore support should be given to support the family as a whole with the children’s best interests as the paramount consideration.

If you are unhappy with how Social Services has treated you or about any of the decisions that have been made in relation to your children and you would like advice then contact a member of our care department on 0116 255 4855.