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1 Social housing and worklessness: an overview Dianna Neal, London Councils

2 2 Today Im going to cover The evidence base for linking social housing and worklessness Why London Councils is interested in links between social housing and employment and training services Results of London Councils research and issues for the future

3 3 Employment rates in London Just under 72% for all Londoners (74% nationally); Parents – 63% (78% nationally) Lone parents – 45% (56% nationally) Low skilled – 56% (67% nationally) Households living in social housing – 52%

4 4 Worklessness in social housing

5 5 Worklessness in social housing where a social tenant is affected by one disadvantage, their rate of worklessness is much higher than for those with the same disadvantage.. who do not live in social housing... [and]... for any given number of overlapping disadvantages, those in social housing have lower employment rates. (Hills, 2007).

6 6 Is living in social housing a disincentive to work? Social housing per se not a disincentive to working – some aspects are incentives e.g. sub-market rents and security of tenure Some area effects e.g. post-code discrimination; narrow spatial horizons; social norms and routines unsuited to formal paid work No consistent evidence of 'cultures of worklessness Mobility can be an issue – unwillingness to consider moving to improve job opportunities Lots more additional barriers identified - health issues; childcare responsibilities; debt; lack of qualifications and work experience.

7 7 Why focus on social housing Concentration of inactive workless people; Focus of LA worklessness activity; Effective outreach for those not in touch with JCP etc Provision of wrap around services USP for boroughs; Tenants looking for trusted, local providers

8 8 London Councils research: Going to work

9 9 Key findings Very few strategic links e.g. on LSP sub-groups More practical links but these tended to be opportunistic and ad hoc; Corporate approach and senior buy-in needed Some good practice examples e.g. training for front-line housing staff; joint working with RSLs; housing providers as employers General recognition that links need to go further and be more opportunities

10 10 Need to go further…. The welfare team could help us enhance our outreach service – they already know who is on unemployment benefits Borough officer We are very willing to refer our residents onto local training and employment provision …. But we just dont know what services are available RSL

11 11 Issues for the future Lots of pilots and new initiatives – how do we embed this to become business as usual? Is this approach cost-effective? Effects of the recession – focus on the newly unemployed, role of RSLs

12 12 Thanks for listening! Dianna Neal Tel: 020 7934 9819; e:

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