16 thoughts on “London Grenfell Tower survivors homeless, many empty houses

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  7. Wednesday 27th September 2017

    posted by Morning Star in Britain

    by Felicity Collier

    THE number of “hidden” homeless people in the capital is 13 times higher than those who are visibly sleeping rough, a new report by the London Assembly reveals.

    On any given night, as many as 12,500 people have no place to call home — but they aren’t receiving support, so are omitted from official statistics.

    Most are young, particularly LGBT people, and those who have experienced domestic violence and abuse, the assembly’s housing committee said.

    Nearly a quarter of a million young people in London have stayed in an unsafe place, it found.

    They may turn to “sofasurfing,” sleeping rough, squatting or sleeping on public transport, leaving them at risk of assault or abuse.

    Only one in five of those aged 16-24 have sought help from the council, as many of those that do present themselves fail to be recognised as vulnerable despite being in danger.

    Green Party London Assembly member Sian Berry said: “Young people, asylum-seekers and people escaping domestic violence can find it hard to get help due to gaps in current policies, and many don’t even try to seek help.”

    The committee called on the government to take action, including extra money for cashstrapped councils to implement the Homelessness Reduction Act.

    It also called on ministers to bring in legislation guaranteeing that victims of abuse — rather than their abuser — are allowed to stay in their homes if they wish to do so.

    And the committee pressed Mayor Sadiq Khan to push councils to record the details of those asking for help so that there is a clearly idea of which groups need support.

    Chartered Institute of Housing head Terrie Alafat said widespread homelessness was a “national disgrace and something we must act on now.”

    Last December, the charity Centrepoint said it had found that more than a quarter of young homeless people have stayed with someone they did not know and 12 per cent have done something illegal in order to be taken into custody.

    Labour has said it would restore the rough-sleepers initiative and aim to create 4,000 more housing association homes for people living on the streets.



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