Economy

Number of people homeless reached record levels last month

Number of people homeless reached record levels last month

Offer them a hot drink or sandwich and keep them company while finding out what further help you could offer. Recent deaths of homeless people have been reported in Westminster, Edinburgh and Chelmsford, which have been linked to the freezing conditions.

A number of organisations throughout the United Kingdom, such as NUFC Fans Food Bank in Newcastle and the Pioneers Museum in Rochdale, are asking for donations of warm clothing to distribute to homeless people.

They ask you to provide details of when and where you may have spotted somebody homeless and they will endeavour to reach them on their regular patrols.

Due to the freezing temperatures, there is a Severe Weather Emergency Protocol in place.

This means that local authorities are making more spaces available for rough sleepers and will aim to get them off the streets as soon as possible.

This is also true if you see someone with a child on the streets. In January alone an extra 520 people became homeless, undoing the gains made by the "seasonal bounce" before Christmas when the total number dropped by 270 people.

"What we are seeing now I believe is a social acceptance of these shocking increases within homelessness", ICHH CEO Anthony Flynn said.

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It can often be people that outreach teams are not already aware of - so enables the public to be the eyes and ears for staff who are able to help those sleeping rough.

You can find more homeless shelters and services across Britain at homeless.org. Local authorities are required to give children shelter if they need it.

Lastly, if you see a homeless person in need of urgent medical help, call 999 immediately.

As the weather takes a cold turn, spare a thought for the thousands of homeless struggling on the streets.

Gleeson said that the biggest challenge they are faced with is the fact that homeless people may not be aware of the weather that has been forecast, and it is therefore "vital" that anyone who sees a homeless person on the streets reports it using the online link.

The third thing people can do if they want to actively help out is to volunteer with a homeless charity, at a shelter or with StreetLink.


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