Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Service provision deal falls through

July 10 2009
Edinburgh council chiefs withdraw contract offers at the last minute Cost-cutting of homeless services in Edinburgh are in disarray after council chiefs withdrew a series of contract offers to charities at the last minute. Support services for 120 vulnerable adults across the city, who are at risk of becoming homeless, were expected to be transferred from Edinburgh Home Link Partnership (EHLP) to charities SAMH and Streetwork this April, but the deal fell through at the last minute. Elsewhere, other homelessness services provided on behalf of the council have been put on hold, with previous operators asked to continue them for the next six months. The process was part of a £14 million re-tendering of all council homeless support services, such as emergency advice for people at risk of sleeping rough. Councillor Gordon Munro, the city's Labour housing spokesman, said: "The situation is a mess - just one week before the contract was meant to be transferred and nobody, either clients or the staff, knew what was going on. "The council told us they didn't need to manage the handover process but it is now quite clear they did and the whole episode raises serious questions about the tendering process. "What is of real concern is what is happening to both the staff and homelessness service users affected by this. We can't afford for these people to be left in the wilderness because of the council." Recently, rough sleeping in Edinburgh has fallen, and the council has focused on a new early prevention initiative. The new approach by the council is aimed at helping those in danger of losing their homes.