Despite being one of the richest countries in the world, the United Kingdom faces a growing issue with homelessness. Many charities collect money and support those without a home but unfortunately, they fail to reach everyone in need.
Stephen, 55, an ex-serviceman from the armed forces, represents a soundboard for many who have lost faith in charity. He is of the opinion that charities cheat people in the name of donation. “I would love to know where the money goes. But I already know where it goes. It goes for wages and it’s all a con. That is all it is. You’ve got the Royal British Legion. Last year they raised 42 million pounds. But it never went to the ex-servicemen. 75 percent of the people that live on the street are ex-forces. We are in a society now. We’re being lied to.”
Bleak, overcast days, cold winds, unrelenting rain; winter in London is hard. It’s even harder when you’re huddled on pavements with rolled up sleeping bags, old backpacks, and a blanket. It’s a stark, uncomfortable reality for London: 1 in 59 of its residents is homeless. This winter, however, it may just get easier if you have a mobile phone.
“It’s a very simple idea and interface,” says Martin Stone, Voluntary Director of the Muswell Hill Soup Kitchen, introducing his new service, Next Meal. “You just have to go online, enter where you are, and you’ll get a list of shelters near you along with the facilities they offer,” he explains. Available both as a website and an app, Next Meal helps homeless people around London find shelters providing food and lodging near them.
The Home Office threatening to remove thousands of European homeless people has been questioned in the High Court.
The judicial review of the Home Office policy enabling the removal of European homeless people who are living on the street will start tomorrow, November 21.
In London alone, at least 95 rough sleepers have been removed in the last year and a half, according to a Freedom of Information request by NELMA and Housing Action South London. However, the number is likely to be higher, as most boroughs said they did not hold this information.
The policy means Immigration Compliance and Enforcement (ICE) teams can arrest, detain and remove homeless EU nationals from the UK for sleeping rough. The guidance was issued in May 2016, stating that rough sleeping was an 'abuse' (l
Hospitals, surgeries and shelters are not providing sanitary products for homeless people, despite the huge mobilisation for low income women’s right in the last few years.
Women’s services manager for the charity Spires, Pamela Mhlophe, is concerned about the current situation: “In this moment, with NHS cutting down on many services, I don’t think they will tackle this problem too,“ she said to Westminster World. ”Private citizens and companies are helping through donations, but it should be a public issue.”
Homeless women are used to living a dangerous life, full of risks, but it becomes much more difficult when they have their period. Besides finding food, a job and a place to stay, they have to look for a private toilet to wash themselves and, most importantly, find access to s
"Come and take a selfie with the homeless." Lee, who prefers to use an alias, vividly remembers the moment when he feared that the men standing just over his head while he slept on the ground would start kicking him.
A few weeks before I met Lee, he was one of the many homeless people on the streets of London. The steps of the National Gallery at Trafalgar Square was his home for many months. He is now in the process of rebuilding his life but has not forgotten his experience as a rough sleeper. His story is so lengthy, that battery on my recorder flat-lines and my coffee goes cold before I could finish.
Many other homeless people have traumatic experiences while trying to survive living on the streets. This can be dama...