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October 19th 2020

A warm welcome to Multiple Disadvantage Matters, the fortnightly newsletter from the Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM) coalition.

MEAM vacancy

The MEAM coalition is seeking a new Partnerships Manager to provide support to local areas across the Midlands and North of England. Deadline for applications is Wednesday 21 October 2020, 9am.

Thematic Action Groups

The MEAM coalition is holding a series of Thematic Action Groups across the network to collaborate on focused system issues. These groups will be supported by our practice and policy teams but driven by the decisions, actions and commitment of local areas. We will be holding two introductory group sessions: 
  • Mental Health on 21st October 2-3pm
  • Prison Release on 28th October 3-4pm
Please email to book your place. 

Healthy Partnerships Self-Assessment Tool

thematic review of partnership structures and effective working across the MEAM Approach network was published last month. Based on this research, we have created a new Healthy Partnerships Self-Assessment Tool for local areas. 

Evaluation feedback session

Earlier this month we held a feedback session on year 3 of the MEAM evaluation. A recording of the session is now available for those who could not attend. Please contact for a link to the video
Latest policy news - COVID-19

Government support for people sleeping rough this winter

Communities Secretary, Robert Jenrick, has announced a package of support for rough sleepers this winter. It includes a new £10 million Cold Weather Fund to support councils and an additional £2 million for faith and community groups. Due to the ongoing risk from Covid-19, self-contained accommodation should be the default this winter. However, guidance was also published for operating night shelters as a last resort. 

Rough Sleeping on Rail Charter

Network Rail has joined with homelessness sector partners to launch a new Rough Sleeping on Rail Charter. It sets out how the rail industry will help safeguard vulnerable people and communities, including training for station staff to give the right advice and support to people sleeping rough around the railway.

Drug related deaths 

The Office for National Statistics has released the drug related deaths figures for 2019 showing a new record high and slight increase on 2018. New deprivation analysis shows that rates of deaths have been much higher in the most deprived areas compared with the least.

Trauma, gender and culture informed approaches

Groundswell has published a new trauma action guide. It aims to support service users to better understand the signs of trauma, why services may use this approach and to help staff start conversations around trauma. 

Covid-19 and use of illegal drugs

The Society for the Study of Addiction has published an article on how Covid-19 has changed the use of illegal drugs looking at available data on use, associations with mental health, drug markets and harm reduction. 

Commonweal Housing anthology

Commonweal Housing has published an anthology of essays from voluntary sector experts on the impact of housing instability. The essays explore the impacts of the housing crisis on survivors of violence against women and girls, those in contact with the criminal justice system, and people going through transitions in life. 

Support in prison 

The Prison Reform Trust has published a briefing highlighting the suspension of most activities in prison aimed at reducing reoffending and preparing people for release. There is concern the suspension of these activities will potentially delay the release of people back into the community. 

Black people disproportionately affected by homelessness

Shelter has released a statement on the first day of Black History Month responding to annual figures on the prevention and relief of homelessness in England. They show that between April 2019 and March 2020, black people were more than three times as likely to experience homelessness. 

Integrated health and care for people who are homeless

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence is consulting on the development of guidance on integrated health and care for people who are homeless. 

APPG on Homelessness and Housing First

The All Party Parliamentary Group on Ending Homelessness has launched an inquiry into Housing First, focusing on how it can be scaled up in England as part of a sustainable solution to homelessness. 
COVID-19 Resources from the sector

Homeless Link updates

Homeless Link has published a welfare update on how the DWP and jobcentres have operated during Covid-19. They have also published a blog on how StreetLink can support new rough sleepers during the pandemic. 

Latest from Clinks

Clinks has submitted a response to the Justice Committee's inquiry into the Future Probation Service. They also published a summary of recent discussions between the Reducing Reoffending Third Sector Advisory Group special interest group on Covid-19 and officials from HMPPS. 

News from Mind 

Mind has responded to the announcement that emergency Mental Health Act powers, as part of the new Coronavirus Act, will be removed. They have also requested urgent clarity on the mental health provision within the Government's new hospital build plans to improve 40 hospitals by 2030. 

Collective Voice 

Collective Voice has published a new resource as part of its membership of the VCSE Health and Wellbeing Alliance on Reducing Health Inequalities for People Living with Frailty
Learning Opportunities

Leadership Programme: lived experience in the criminal justice system

The Lived Experience Movement at the Centre for Knowledge Equity and Clore Social Leadership have partnered to offer a free online leadership programme for lived experience leaders with direct, first-hand experience of the criminal justice system. Deadline for applications is Monday 9th November 2020 at 11.59pm.

Homeless Link Webinar: Anxiety Disorder and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Homeless Link are holding a free webinar on Anxiety Disorder and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder on 21st October, 3-4pm. Attendees will obtain an insight into the factors, causes and treatments available and the impact these conditions may have on work, relationships and quality of life. 

Clinks Webinar: Feminist Leadership

Clinks are hosting a webinar for organisations supporting women in the criminal justice system on 23rd October, 10-11.30am, exploring feminism, intersectionality and power.
Keeping you up to date at this time
Our priority in this difficult period remains people facing multiple disadvantage and the people who support them. If you have any questions, comments or issues you would like to raise, please contact any member of the MEAM team.  

Multiple Disadvantage Matters will keep you up to date with key policy developments affecting people facing multiple disadvantage. Please forward this email to colleagues, who can subscribe here for future editions.

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MEAM's work is supported by the National Lottery Community Fund and The Lankelly Chase Foundation

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