Eden Council has discussed the introduction of a dedicated “homelessness champion” to help tackle homelessness in the district.

The role would be appointed by and accountable to Eden Council, and would act as a “strategic leader” on measures taken by the council to tackle homelessness in the district.

The move was discussed at last night’s Eden Council meeting.

The homelessness champion will join the council’s three other member champions, for the armed forces, for children and young people, and for older people.

The role would be dedicated to the implementation of the council’s homelessness strategy, which was agreed by Eden Council in February.

The strategy identified that at present, Eden’s levels of homelessness are “significantly lower” in Eden than across Cumbria, the north west and England.

Numbers of homelessness people in Eden have fallen over the past five years.

However, the number of households in temporary accommodation has increased, though the numbers continue to be lower than average.

The strategy identified that “ Eden has a higher rate of single homeless males compared to elsewhere, however local levels of rough sleeping are very low.

“Eden’s future levels of homelessness are likely to increase, due to house prices to earnings

ratios being are less favourable compared other areas.”

Eden Council works in partnership with voluntary organisations, housing associations and Cumbria County Council to help prevent homelessness in the district.

The new homelessness champion role would take the lead on implementing the measures identified in February’s strategy that would help tackle homelessness in the district.

The homelessness champion would also act as a “strong strategic leader” on homelessness, as well as raising and promoting homelessness issues, and furthermore would advocate the importance of prevention and responding proactively to homelessness.

The role would also include advocating for realistic funding regimes to provide efficient and effective services for vulnerable families and individuals at risk of homelessness.