The Mayor of London has announced that services to support rough sleepers are being expanded.
This news comes as new research has shown that more than 1,200 rough sleepers were supported into emergency accommodation over two weeks of the coldest weather in January; a figure which is approximately 30% more than during the same period in 2023.
Tackling homelessness and rough sleeping is a top priority in London, as evidenced by the quadrupling of City Hall’s rough sleeping budget and the latest announcement of support services being expanded. As part of this support, a new ‘No Second Night Out’ hub will be opened in West London at the beginning of April, providing further space for assessments and beds.
Run by charity St Mungo’s, the service comes as part of a £17 million, three-year investment into ‘No Second Night Out.’
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said:
“These new figures are very worrying, and a should be a wake-up call for the Government. Despite the huge amount of work being done in London, we can’t do this alone and the truth is Ministers are turning a blind eye to the scale of this national crisis.
“In December I asked the Government to play its part and deliver an emergency winter package of support, including pausing Home Office evictions to help prevent those most at risk sleeping in the cold this winter – something they have failed to do. The Government’s continued hostile approach to refugees has meant that hundreds of people are becoming homeless or sleeping rough on our streets.”
“As Mayor, I’m determined to do everything I can to work with boroughs and the voluntary sector to tackle rough sleeping in the capital and I urge Government Ministers to back our efforts to end this shameful situation for good.”
Since Sadiq Khan was elected as Mayor of London in 2016, more than 16,000 rough sleepers have been helped off the streets. Despite this, he continues to urge the government to provide a further £20 million for new emergency accommodation and support as the cold weather continues.
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