Lib Dem leader Vince Cable praises St Albans homelessness charity

Lib Dem leader Vince Cable visited Emmaus in St Albans with prospective parliamentary candidate Dais

Lib Dem leader Vince Cable visited Emmaus in St Albans with prospective parliamentary candidate Daisy Cooper. Picture: Emmaus Hertfordshire - Credit: Archant

Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable described a Herts homelessness charity as “inspiring” after visiting its headquarters in St Albans.

Sir Vince Cable visited Emmaus Hertfordshire last month to learn more about the charity’s work helping people rebuild their lives following homelessness and social exclusion.

He was joined by prospective parliamentary candidate for St Albans, Daisy Cooper, Welwyn Hatfield’s Lib Dem party candidate Barbara Gibson, and St Albans Central and Clarence Ward councillor Chris White.

Following a tour of the Emmaus Hertfordshire community, which houses up to 39 former homeless people, Sir Vince met with residents to learn about their work in the charity’s upholstery workshop, where they ‘upcycle’ items to be sold in Emmaus shops.

Sir Vince said: “The inspiring homelessness charity Emmaus Hertfordshire provides people with new skills and supports them in creating new lives.

“The St Albans Liberal Democrats support providing those who have experienced homelessness with the skills to move on, but finding affordable housing is hard and that is why it is a priority for Lib Dems.”

In a recent article for Politics Home, Sir Vince stated that housing should be a priority in the local elections, and said the depletion of council housing through ‘right to buy’ and the lack of social housing have contributed to homelessness and left people at the bottom of the housing ladder.

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Emmaus chief executive John Chesters said: “Having Sir Vince here and listening first-hand to the people we support explain the impact of benefit changes, hidden-homelessness, the significant issues faced on release from prison and so much more provided us with an invaluable opportunity.

“The desperate need to face the crisis of providing social housing and truly affordable rented accommodation was very clearly a priority for Sir Vince and his colleagues, particularly in the local St Albans area. This is a major challenge for our residents who are ready to move on from the community.

“Our discussions with Sir Vince, Daisy, Barbara and Chris showed they are keen to help us do even more and we look forward to following up on this with them all.”