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Extension to Crawley Open House funding

An extension for funding to charities providing support for homeless and vulnerable people in West Sussex under threat of being scrapped has been announced.

West Sussex County Council is reviewing its contracts worth a combined £6.2m with a range of organisations that were due to end in April 2019.

The charities involved, including Crawley Open House have warned that losing this source of funding would lead to service reductions and some closures in areas including supported housing for vulnerable young people and hostels for the homeless.

Amanda Jupp, cabinet member for adults and health, announced on Friday October 19 that the contracts will be extended by six months until September 2019 while the review is carried out.

She said a final decision has not been made and is due in December. Until then they would be working with district and borough council colleagues as well as a coalition of the service providers to find a long-term sustainable solution.

She apologised for any anxiety caused by the original publication of the proposals, but described how the county council could ‘no longer deliver services on our own’.

She accused others of turning the issue into a ‘political battle’, but added:”We can all work together to improve what is available in the county for this group of residents.”