Government guidance sets out approach to using rough sleeping as grounds to cancel a person’s right to stay in the country.

In response to the publication of the Home Office’s Guidance on refusing or cancelling permission to stay on the grounds of rough sleeping St Mungo’s Chief Executive Steve Douglas CBE said: “If the Government’s intention was to allay fears that its new immigration rules were not intended to criminalise rough sleeping, or to penalise those who find themselves without a roof over their head, this guidance fails to do so.

“That people have to sleep on the streets is unacceptable and dangerous. And anyone who is in that situation should be able to reach out for support without fear of losing their right to live and work in this country.

“Our outreach teams work tirelessly to find and support people experiencing street homelessness.

“We believe the new guidance will affect this vital work as people sleeping rough become more distrustful of, and reluctant to engage with, the services there to help and support them.

“Along with other homelessness organisations and partners we will seek to raise these concerns with Ministers, as a matter of urgency.”