No going back: A unique chance to help thousands off the streets for good
During this pandemic, St Mungo's has been part of the national effort to help thousands of people off the streets and into hotels to keep them safe. Across the country, almost 15,000 people at risk of rough sleeping have been given accommodation. This has been an amazing achievement and allowing people to isolate themselves has probably saved lives.
But now we need your help to ensure no one has to go back to the streets.
We've achieved a huge amount so far. But the hotels are only a temporary fix, while the lockdown is in place - and soon they'll need the rooms back.
No one should have to return to the streets after lockdown ends.
That's why the Government must urgently ensure no one is forced to go back. People isolating in the hotels need to be supported to move into the right accommodation for them, whether that's a specialist hostel or permanent housing. And everyone should get the right support to leave the streets behind for good.
Will you write to your MP and ask them to urge the Prime Minister to ensure that no one has to go back to sleeping on the streets?
What we're calling for
To ensure there's no going back for the thousands of people who have been helped off the streets during coronavirus, the Government must act.
The Government has announced a taskforce to work on ensuring as few people as possible return to life on the streets. This is a good start but now the Government needs to guarantee that no one will be forced out of their emergency accommodation without being offered suitable alternative housing. And give councils the funding they need to make this happen.
The Government also needs to: -
This means urgently increasing funding for Housing First, floating support and supported housing services so that extra help is available to those who need support to avoid losing their home.
Women sleeping rough are at high risk of physical and sexual violence, so they need safe, secure housing with the right support to escape abuse for good.
LHA rates should be increased to cover the cheapest 50% of private rented properties in each area, and lift the Benefit Cap so people moving on from hotels can afford private rented housing.
Continue to pay for housing for people with no recourse to public funds who would otherwise return to rough sleeping.
Without this it will be practically impossible for people to secure a income by sorting out their immigration status or finding work.