Public body duty to refer

On 1st October 2018, the Homelessness Reduction Act (2017) introduced a new requirement for specified public bodies. This means they have a statutory duty to refer any service users they think may be homeless, or threatened with homelessness, to the local authority.

If you are working with someone you believe is homeless or at risk of homelessness, you can complete our online referral form.

Public bodies with the duty to refer

  • Prisons
  • Youth offender institutions
  • Secure training centres
  • Secure colleges
  • Youth offending teams
  • Probation services(including community rehabilitation companies);
  • Jobcentre Plus
  • Social Services
  • Hospital emergency departments
  • Urgent treatment centres
  • Hospitals in their capacity of providing in-patient treatment

You can still make a referral even if you don’t work for one of the listed organisations.  Encompass will accept referrals from any organisation.

How to make a referral

As of 5th April 2023 all duty to refers need to be made with this link 

If we receive any duty to refers via the old form or website we will kindly ask you to redo the referral using this link

About the duty to refer

You can read the Homelessness Code of Guidance on GOV.UK (the Duty to Refer is explained in Chapter 4).