Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer pledges to end ex-forces homelessness by 2024

21 April 2023, 10:32 | Updated: 21 April 2023, 10:40

Johnny Mercer aims to end veteran homelessness

By Alice Bourne

Johnny Mercer has told LBC that if veterans are homeless by the end of the year, he wants to find out 'why' as he unveils his new policy to target veteran homelessness.

Plymouth Moor MP Johnny Mercer told Nick Ferrari at Breakfast that if his £8 million allocation of funds to tackle veteran homelessness does not eradicate the problem by the end of the year he would ‘want to know why.’

£8.55 million funding has been announced for more than 900 veteran-supported housing units with specialist help for former armed forces personnel.

The Minister said: “Veterans are generally underrepresented in the homeless population, the last study had it at two percent.”

He estimated the number of homeless in “the low thousands” but said: “We’ll only really know when we start putting these pathways in place.”

READ MORE: Dominic Raab vows to 'fight to the death' over bullying claims as Rishi Sunak 'agonises' over decision

Nick then asked: “What gives you the confidence this problem will be solved by the end of the year.”

Johnny Mercer answered: “Because there’s a lot of provision in this space already.. the idea that there is no veterans care in this country is not correct.”

He said: “The challenge has always been organising and collaborating that provision to make sure that irrespective of your background and your circumstance you can access this care.

The policy also puts in place a bespoke homelessness pathway, called Op FORTITUDE - similar to Op COURAGE for Mental Health care, to ensure every veteran at risk of homelessness knows where to turn.

When Nick asked what would happen if the problem did not end by January the Minister said: “Well I would want to know why people are sleeping rough.”

“We’ve gone out secured the money, designed the programs and if people are homeless by the end of this year then I want to know why.”

He concluded: “I’ve worked hard on this.”

READ MORE: Boris Johnson's former adviser brands Dominic Raab 'robust' but refuses to label him a 'bully'

More Nick Ferrari

See more More Nick Ferrari

Nick Ferrari pressed Shadow Education Secretary Bridget Phillipson regarding trans women and bathrooms.

'So which lavatory would they actually use?': Nick Ferrari presses shadow minister on trans women and public toilets

Postal minister Kevin Hollinrake has said a future Tory government could intervene in the deal for Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky to take over the Royal Mail.

'Not a done deal': Minister says Royal Mail sale to foreign owner may not take place

Exclusive
Home Secretary James Cleverly (left) and shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper take part in a live immigration debate on LBC's Nick Ferrari at Breakfast at Global Studios in Leicester Square, London. Picture date: Tuesday June 25, 2024.

James Cleverly debates Yvette Cooper on immigration | Watch Again

Yvette Cooper slammed Just Stop Oil as 'pathetic'

Yvette Cooper slams 'pathetic' Just Stop Oil as she brands Stonehenge stunt a 'total disgrace'

Laura Saunders, the Conservative candidate for Bristol North West

Tory candidate being investigated over alleged election date bet is 'married to Conservative Director of Campaigns'

Gambling probes into two Tory candidates are a 'betrayal of trust' in Rishi Sunak, Michael Gove has said.

Gove says election bets are ‘betrayal of Prime Minister’s trust’ as second Tory candidate investigated by regulator

Keir Starmer came out on top after LBC’s two exclusive phone-ins

Keir Starmer comes out on top after LBC phone-ins – as Rishi Sunak seen as ‘overwhelmingly negative’

Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer during LBC's Nick Ferrari at Breakfast

'We would seek a better agreement' Keir Starmer tells LBC where he thinks "botched" Brexit deal can be improved

Exclusive
Sir Keir Starmer speaks to LBC

‘No magic wand’ to recruit more teachers as Starmer insists removing ‘tax breaks’ for private schools is ‘tough choice’

Tom Weatherall is still searching for his treasured medals which went missing in France

Renewed plea for missing medals lost in France as RAF veteran gifted with set of replicas

'Economically Brexit's working': Nigel Farage says but claims it has 'not been properly implimented'

'Economically Brexit's working': Nigel Farage says but claims it has 'not been properly implemented'

Nigel Farage says Germans should 'get a sense of humour' amid calls for football fans who chant 'Ten German Bombers' to be prosecuted

Nigel Farage says Germans need to 'get a sense of humour' if football fans sing Ten German Bombers chant

Nigel Farage in the LBC studio today and (right) on the Reform UK campaign bus in Barnsley, South Yorkshire this week

'This is how ordinary people speak': Farage defends Reform UK candidates after anti-Islam and far-right comments exposed

Exclusive
Tory Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride was put on the spot by an LBC listener from a "Blue Wall" constituency rained down a barrage of complaints about soaring mortgages, the NHS crisis, crumbling schools and roads, and dentist shortages.

'Why would anyone sane vote for the Tories?': Minister put on the spot with barrage of complaints from LBC listener

Mr Weatherall's lost medals

Nick Ferrari offers £500 reward for return of RAF veteran's medals lost yesterday in Ranville, France

Kemi Badenoch rules out serving alongside Nigel Farage after he hints at Tory takeover.

Nigel Farage 'wants to destroy the Conservative Party', Kemi Badenoch tells LBC