Human Appeal’s work with Greater Manchester Citizens is going from strength to strength, based on the wonderful participation of staff at the second Delegates Assembly on the 25th February. Over 60 people came together at the Manchester University Student's Union, to work collectively and establish the Greater Manchester Citizens' agenda for the Mayoral Assembly on May 1st.
As a founding partner, Human Appeal has worked closely with the organisation over the last eight months to explore the issues that have affected local residents and staff in Stockport. Heartfelt testimonies on all ten issues raised at the first Delegates Assembly were listened to with the upmost respect from all attendees.
Our Human Appeal staff spoke about affordable housing and homelessness, a concern chosen by our staff and residents following our third listening campaign. When addressing these key issues, we explored the systemic problems that underpin homelessness in Manchester, and emphasised how vital the Greater Manchester Mayor’s use of the £300 million Housing Investment Fund to create sustainable levels of social and affordable housing would be.
We showed how the issue of homelessness is connected to almost every other problem raised in the first Delegates Assembly; from a lack of access to health services without a fixed address, to the increase in crime associated with rough sleeping. Human Appeal, along with the support of the other institutions present, argued that by tackling homelessness in conjunction with affordable housing, we can decrease the number of rough sleepers on our streets, and create sustainable change.
Having offered our thoughts and shared statistics on how affordable or social housing will decrease the rate of homelessness, each institution present took a vote, discussing ten issues thoroughly before ranking them based on what we all felt was the highest priority to address on May 1st and beyond.
The four issues chosen by vote will be put to the Greater Manchester Mayoral candidates on May 1st. They are: Social Care and Health, Hate Crime, the Living Wage and Homelessness and Affordable Housing.
Human Appeal will now begin researching, gathering testimony and working on presenting the issue of homelessness and affordable housing to the Mayoral Assembly. It’s a great cause for us to work on and our domestic programmes (particularly Wrap Up Manchester) have drawn upon these issues. We are proud to have helped to put this key area on the agenda for Greater Manchester in 2017 and beyond.
If you're interested in showing your support at the Mayoral Assembly please book your tickets here.