An innovative housing scheme to protect LGBT people has been approved.
Developers are investing £1.4m to house LGBT people who have faced persecution and hardship in Salford, Greater Manchester.
The new building will create 14 apartments of either two or four bedrooms to act as a safe haven for LGBT people in the borough.
11% of hate crimes in the City of Salford are motivated by homophobia, according to recent stats.
The project is being created by ForViva, a social organisation which is funding the site, along with the Homes and Communities Agency.
Colette McKune, group deputy chief executive at ForViva, said: “We all have the right to be able to access a secure home and feel safe in their community.
“It has become clear that some LGBT people in Salford were facing incredibly tough choices on where to live, or even homelessness because their circumstances had left them with nowhere to turn for alternative housing.
“This scheme will go some way to addressing that challenge and will allow people to improve their situations and live independently.”
Developers have worked closely with Salford City Council and the LGBT Foundation on the project.
Paul Martin, chief executive of the Manchester LGBT Foundation, said: “Lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people can still face considerable discrimination within social housing services which can result in feelings of exclusion and isolation.
“I welcome today’s announcement about this ground-breaking scheme which recognises that LGBT people are an integral part of society and make a tremendous contribution to the identity of modern Salford.
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“I very much look forward to working with City West and the ForViva Group on ensuring that the needs of their LGBT residents are better met.”
The foundation recently found that inadequate access to housing is a major issue for LGBT people in the area.
Councillor Tracy Kelly, Lead Member for Housing and Neighbourhoods at Salford City Council, told the MEN: “Everyone needs a good quality, safe home. LGBT people have often experienced intolerance and harassment and felt that they could not be their true selves.
“I’m delighted they will now have the security and comfort they want and wish them many long and happy years in their new homes.”
Meanwhile in London charity ‘The Outside Project‘ renovated a bus first used by the band Status Quo to become London’s newest homeless shelter.
The bus is based in the Barking and Dagenham area of east London and can host twelve people at any given time.
Volunteer Carla Ecola told the Barking and Dagenham Post: “We’re so excited about this project…We’re proud to be located here in east London.”
Research from the Albert Kennedy trust found that a quarter of young homeless people identify as LGBT+, and that LGBT+ people have specific needs when involved with social care programmes.