During one of the hottest months of the year, the council-funded Street Outreach Team came into contact with 123 new people who were at risk of sleeping rough but through the support offered by the team, they were diverted from spending a single night on the streets.
In addition, of the 85 people who were already sleeping rough in Liverpool in June, 57 were supported away from the streets and into services including temporary accommodation, the Labre House Rough Sleeper Night Hub, reconnected with family of friends or were found other solutions.
The Street Outreach service is provided by The Whitechapel Centre and funded by Liverpool City Council. Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr Lynnie Hinnigan, said the heatwave had brought with it a specific set of issues for the team:
“Because of the warm weather we have seen an increase in the number of people staying out and not returning to their accommodation or hostel place,” said Cllr Hinnigan. “The prolonged heatwave has caused concern for those sleeping rough and our teams have been in daily contact with them to provide water and sun cream to prevent them from being admitted to hospital.”
She added: “The majority of people who become homeless never spend a night sleeping rough. Where possible we support people into the right solution on the first day we come into contact with them.”
Cllr Hinnigan said: “We know that rough sleeping... are real causes for concern for people in our city, which is why we are doing all we can to provide people with the help they need to get off the streets and to turn their lives around.”
“Our Always Room Inside campaign means that no-one needs to spend time on the street. At Labre House there is enough room for anyone who needs a place to stay. They can also get food and access to support services that can keep them off the streets for good. However, we can only do this if people are willing to engage with us in the first place. The best way to help anyone who is sleeping rough or is begging on the streets is to refer them to our services so we can begin to work with them.”
If you have concerns about someone sleeping rough on the streets of Liverpool, you can call the Always Room Inside 24 hour helpline: 0300 123 2041