Islington Council reprimanded over error which left teenage girl homeless

Islington Council has been criticised by a watchdog after a teenage girl was left homeless. Picture:

Islington Council has been criticised by a watchdog after a teenage girl was left homeless. Picture: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

A homeless Islington teen has been “lost” after council officers failed to support her, a watchdog has said.

An investigation by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, released today, found Islington Council failed to separate the girl’s need for help from her mother’s homeless application.

Officers decided her mother was intentionally homeless, but failed to recognise their duties to house the girl, who was referred to a neighbouring borough.

She has now been lost in the system and her whereabouts are currently unknown.

Michael King, from the agency, said: “Islington Council’s failures in this case have led to a situation where there is genuine concern for the welfare of this young person, as the council can no longer get in contact with her.”

Islington has paid the girl £400 compensation via a relative for the distress caused.

After the investigation, it also held a “complaint learning meeting”. The Ombudsman said it welcomed the “positive action the council has taken to learn from this complaint and avoid similar problems for others in future”.

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A council spokesperson said: “We’re very sorry for the way we handled this case. We’ve held an internal review of this complaint, and have shared the findings from this so we can learn lessons for the future in any similar situation.”

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