Homelessness assessment is a thankless task when there’s scant social housing to go around, but sometimes I can slip someone through the gate
I have worked as a housing options officer since 2002. The job, as well as the job title, changes with each parliament. Homeless persons unit, homeless prevention team. Housing options, housing choices, housing assessment – unfortunately, none of these titles actually provide more housing for the homeless but I am sure somewhere a consultant is getting a nice payout for creating job titles.
I first decided to work in homelessness with a local authority as a gateway to working in housing. I was advised by someone at housing charity Shelter to do the job for six months to learn “how the enemy works”. But my colleagues were great and are dedicated to helping the people that came steadily pouring through the door. So 14 years later I am still doing the same job, albeit with a different title.
Homelessness is a nice little earner for slumlords
Related: Each ‘investment opportunity’ means a life of insecurity for a tenant
I work in a service where not helping people is generally seen as doing a good job
Related: I hate having to explain the housing crisis to women who feel life couldn’t get worse