A study of the housing strategies and the linked community care plans of 120 local authorities,found that:
- Most local authorities have commissioned housing needs surveys but with special needs added on to general needs surveys focusing on affordability.
- Surveys of special needs are developing but as they are not being carried out within a standard framework, findings are difficult to compare and collate nationally.
- There is concern amongst general needs housing associations and local authorities about unmet support needs. Housing authorities are responding by establishing special support teams and increasingly linking offers of accommodation to guarantees of care/support packages.
- Social housing is geographically concentrated and the location of people with specific needs is strongly associated with indicators of deprivation. Whereas planning procedures are sometimes used to restrict the housing opportunities of people with specific needs, the limited positive powers available to promote ‘balanced’ communities are rarely used.