The Public Services Ombudsman for Wales has powers to undertake ‘own initiative’ investigations where evidence suggests that there may be systemic service failure or maladministration.

Following consultation on the principle of undertaking an investigation into the administration of the homelessness review process by local authorities in Wales, the Ombudsman has now considered the responses received. There was a range of responses. Some responses suggested that there was no need for a review, whilst others expressed concern that this was not a good time to conduct an investigation in view of the pressures on local authorities of COVID-related work. Other responses welcomed the idea of undertaking an investigation in this area, noting the good work already done in this area and recognising the value of suitable and safe accommodation as one of the measures that can help reduce vulnerability during COVID-19.

After careful consideration of all comments received, the Ombudsman has prepared a specific proposal for the investigation. The proposal is for a focussed and proportionate investigation, involving a small sample of local authorities. Comments and responses on this specific proposal are invited.

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