#HugosEarthquake Social Media Notice

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Due to growth of the Campaign we are now in a proud position where volunteers are helping to run our social media accounts: Facebook and Twitter! Because more than one person is overlooking the accounts it means when you Tweet or comment, there is a chance a different person is replying or commenting.

Where possible, Campaign social media volunteers will put there name or their initials to signify who you are talking to and who is replying back. If you have any issues or concerns, please contact press@hugosearthquake.org.

Thank you.
#HugosEarthquake

27/08/2016

Celebrate and debate on this #BankHolidayWeekend

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Celebrate the fact you now probably have a long-awaited 3 day Bank Holiday Weekend but whilst you celebrate, start having a debate. A debate whether your behaviour to other people you meet on nights out is acceptable.

Why do I say that? Well, because as the Country erupts into 3 nights of solid celebration – we have to remember that there are homeless people out on the streets up and down the country. Street homeless people probably have little or nothing to celebrate about this weekend because they might not have a place to call home, money to celebrate with or can enjoy the fact they have a short time off work. Being homeless IS a job – it’s a job to keep yourself alive and cope with what the public throw at you (sometimes literally).

This object they throw at the homeless person could be change, but it could easily be a physical part of their body hitting them… Doesn’t happen you think? The feature image at the top of this post is evident, the moment where the attackers foot struck the homeless’ head. WATCH the all the chilling footage from January 2016 at the bottom of this post.

So I say this: Remember that YOU could be homeless at any point and live on the streets like this gentleman but by everyone showing someone respect this weekend because they are in a bad situation, will encourage more people to return this respect if you end up like this and so the ripple effect happens.
 
I say all of this not because I want to dampen anyone’s spirits, but instead just inject a shockwave which hopefully will improve attitudes towards the homeless this Bank Holiday and beyond.
Please share this post and let’s share a thought to the thousands in our towns and cities this weekend who aren’t having a celebration, but instead just about ‘living’ with the added dimension of living in possible fear and dread.
Thank you,
Hugo
#HugosEarthquake | #SomewhereInSummer

CAMPAIGN UPDATE: July-August 2016

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Hi all,

I am so sorry I haven’t done much blogging… It’s been really busy and I have missed catching you up with where the Campaign is up to!

We have got a new volunteer team based in locations in England, and they are working on taking the Campaign into their areas. Taking the Campaign out of Worcestershire and Herefordshire is definitely a huge step for both myself and the movement, and is showing our growth.

The Campaign has seen increased exposure since #SomewhereInSummer launched, including ITV Central News and newspapers which has been amazing! It has really pushed homelessness awareness up the agenda – and this is one of the main goals of the Campaign. I am busy planning with the team what the next sub-Campaign is going to look like after #SomewhereInSummer has died down… Keep your eyes peeled for more information coming soon.

On Somewhere In Summer, I have been doing more and more Facebook Live videos which have been gaining more and more views each time. Thank you for watching and sharing them!

So yeah… We filmed a documentary too! Well, part of a documentary! Volunteer and good friend of mine, Andy Kinnear from London, was a guest star in it! It is currently being edited and developed, with more on that in the coming weeks!

As you may or may not have noticed, the Campaign has really ranked up its output on social media and media! Newspapers, TV, new Twitter Handle and our Facebook page growing daily! It’s so amazing, and what I only dreamed of when I started it all off. I have had lots of messages of support from both the public and also organisations. Through this, I have met some truly amazing people along with even more amazing stories. I feel so privileged to know the experiences of others, because it’s their personal time and moments… There’s nothing more I treasure than the trust between two people who have been through their own wars, telling about those troubles.

It’s safe to say, the Campaign is moving quickly and will continue to grow. I am looking into how to turn it into a legal entity, set up an official bank account and turn it from being mostly a social media-based into an actual organisation.

I’m very proud and grateful of everyone who has worked on the Campaign… It wouldn’t be like this without you! ‘#HugosEarthquake’ might have my name in it, but I can assure you that I’m not the one that makes it great. Thank you for all the tags in homeless stories on Facebook, too… You really are the eyes and ears of the Campaign!

So there we have it… A brief Campaign update! Hopefully that has dosed you up on all things homelessness awareness! Watch out for Campaign videos on my Facebook coming up this week!

Much love and see you soon,
Hugo

P.S. Please do contact us if you need to: #HugosEarthquake Facebook Page/Tweet us on Twitter/drop an email via the contact form:

 

YOUR LOCAL AUTHORITY NUMBER FOR HOMELESSNESS/ADVICE (ENGLAND AND WALES ONLY):

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Welcome to our A-W on the number to call if you are threatened with or are homeless. In alphabetical order are all Local Authorities/Council’s in England and Wales and their homeless number. You are able to call these numbers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Emergency numbers will work before 9am and after 5pm weekdays and 24 hours over weekends or Bank Holiday’s.
If you want to see the process that the Local Authority will go through after you get in contact, click here. (Opens a new window)

If you are viewing on a laptop or computer, press Ctrl + F to search quicker.

All numbers were correct at the time of publishing, however if there is any incorrect number – please email hugo@hugosearthquake.org.

If you have any concerns about a rough sleeper, or you are rough sleeping – please contact Street Link on their website or call 0300 500 0914.



Adur district council:

01903 221063

Allerdale borough council

0303 123 1702

Amber valley borough council

0300 456 2531

Arun district council

01903 737552.

Emergency number: 01903737552

Ashfield district council

01623457252

Emergency number:  01623450000

Ashford borough council

01233 330688

Aylesbury vale district council

01296585168

Babergh District Council

01473825757

Barking and Dagenham London Borough Council

02087248323

Emergency number: 02082153000

Barnet London Borough Council

02083594797

Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council

01226773870

Emergency number: 08449841800

Barrow-in-Furness Borough Council

01229 876332

Emergency number: 01229833311

Basildon Borough Council

Emergency number: 01268533333

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council

01256844844

Emergency number: 01256840110

Bassetlaw District Council

01909535122

Emergency number: 01909534999

Bath & North East Somerset Council

01225396296

Bedford Borough Council

01234718058

Bexley Council

02083037777

Birmingham City Council

01213032296

Blaby District Council

01162727770

Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council

01254585444

Emergency number: 07739454978

Blackpool Council

01253477760

Emergency number: 01253477600

Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council

01495354600

Bolsover District Council

01246242424

Bolton Council

01204335830

Borough of Poole

01202633804

Emergency number: 0800506050

Boston Borough Council

01205314555

Bournemouth Borough Council

01202451467

Bracknell Forest Borough Council

01344352009

Bradford Metropolitan District Council

01274435999

Emergency number: 01274381999

Braintree District Council

01376552525

Breckland Council

01362656870

Emergency number: 01522782246

Brent Council

02089372000

Emergency number: 02089371234

Brentwood Borough Council

01277312500

Emergency number: 012277261112

Bridgend County Borough Council

01656643643

Brighton & Hove City Council

01273294400

Bristol City Council

01173526800

Broadland District Council

01603430641

Emergency number: 01603412180

Bromley London Borough Council

02084617721

Emergency number: 03003038671

Bromsgrove District Council

08000850160

Broxbourne Borough Council

01992785567

Emergency number: 01992785528

Broxtowe Borough Council

01159177777

Burnley Borough Council

01282425011

Bury Metropolitan Borough Council

01612535537

Caerphilly County Borough Council

01443873552

Calderdale Metropolitan Borough Council

01422392460

Cambridge City Council

01223457918

Emergency number: 08443353944

Camden Council

02079744444

Cannock Chase District Council

01543462621

Canterbury City Council

01227762605

Cardiff Council

02920570750

Emergency number: 02920873141

Carlisle City Council

01228817200

Emergency number: 01228817386

Carmarthenshire County Council

01554899259

Emergency number: 01267234567

Castle Point Borough Council

01268882200

Emergency number:01268758357

 

Central Bedfordshire Council

03003008302

Ceredigion County Council

01545570881

Charnwood Borough Council

01509634567

Chelmsford City Council

01245606400

Emergency number: 01245606644

Cheltenham Borough Council

Emergency number: 01452614194

Cherwell District Council

01295227004

Cheshire East Council

03001235017

Emergency number: 03001235015

Cheshire West and Chester Council

03001232442

Emergency number: 03001238123

Chesterfield Borough Council

01246345825

Emergency number: 01629533190

Chichester District Council

01243785166

Emergency number: 1243785339

Chiltern District Council

01494729000

Chorley Borough Council

01257515151

Christchurch Borough Council

01202795000

City of London Corporation

02073321838

City of York Council

01904554500

Colchester Borough Council

01206282569

Emergency number: 03003334444

Conwy County Borough Council

03001240050

Copeland Borough Council

08450531327

Emergency number: 08450531327

Corby Borough Council

01536464629

Cornwall Council

03001234161

Cotswold District Council

01285623300

Council of the Isles of Scilly

01720424000

Coventry City Council

02476834025

Craven District Council

01756706475

Emergency number: 01653699392

Crawley Borough Council

01293438000

Croydon Council

02087266100

Dacorum Borough Council

01442228000

Emergency number: 08000186050

Darlington Borough Council

01325405333

Emergency number: 08702402994

Dartford Borough Council

01322343114

Emergency number: 03456341212

Daventry District Council

01327871100

Denbighshire County Council

01824712372

Emergency number: 03001233068

Derby City Council

01332640085

Emergency number: 01332786968

Derbyshire Dales District Council

01629761311

Emergency number: 08456058058

Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council

01302736000

Emergency number: 01302323444

Dover District Council

01304821199

Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council

03005552345

Durham County Council

03000268000

Emergency number: 01388722538

Ealing Council

02088258888

East Cambridgeshire District Council

01353665555

East Devon District Council

01395517469

Emergency number: 01395516854

East Dorset District Council

01202795096

East Hampshire District Council

01730234345

Emergency number: 07850358156

East Herts Council

01279655261

East Lindsey District Council

01507600206

Emergency number: 07766776447

East Northamptonshire Council

01832742000

East Riding of Yorkshire Council

01482396301

Emergency number: 01377241273

East Staffordshire Borough Council

08001313126

Emergency number: 01283508126

Eastbourne Borough Council

01323761093

Eastleigh Borough Council

02380688165

Eden District Council

01768861428

Emergency number: 08003581401

Elmbridge Borough Council

01372474590

Emergency number: 01372361686

Enfield Council

02083791000

Epping Forest District Council

01992564000

Epsom and Ewell Borough Council

01372732000

Erewash Borough Council

01159072244

Emergency number: 01629532600

Essex County Council

03456061212

Exeter City Council

01392277888

Emergency number: 08453511060

Fareham Borough Council

01329236100

Fenland District Council

01354654321

Flintshire County Council

01352703777

Forest Heath District Council

01638719345

Emergency number: 01284757178

Forest of Dean District Council

01594810000

Emergency number: 01452614194

Fylde Borough Council

01253658658

Emergency number: 01253642111

 Gateshead Council

08009239995

Emergency number: 01914770844

Gedling Borough Council

01159013681

Emergency number: 08000960306

Gosport Borough Council

02392584242

Gravesham Borough Council

01474564422

Great Yarmouth Borough Council

01493856100

Guernsey

01481245530

Guildford Borough Council

01483444471

Emergency number: 01483564821

Gwynedd Council

01286685100

Emergency housing:01766771000

Hackney London Borough Council

02083562929

Emergency number: 02083562300

Halton Borough Council

03033334300

Hambleton District Council

01609779977

Emergency number: 01609767267

Hammersmith and Fulham London Borough Council

02087534198

Harborough District Council

Emergency number: 01858828282

Haringey Council

02084891000

Harlow District Council

01279446655

Harrogate Borough Council

01423500600

Emergency number: 01423556300

Harrow Council

02084241093

Emergency number: 02088635611

Hart District Council

01252774420

Emergency number: 08456770678

Hartlepool Borough Council

01429284313

Emergency number: 01429869424

Hastings Borough Council

01424451100

Emergency number: 01424451999

Havant Borough Council

02392446379

Havering London Borough Council

01708432824

Emergency number: 01708433999

Hertsmere Borough Council

02082072277

Emergency number: 08453000021

High Peak Borough Council

03451298075

Emergency number: 01629532600

Hillingdon London Borough Council

01895556666

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council

01455238141

Emergency number: 01455251137

Horsham District Council

01403215204

Hounslow London Borough Council

02085834242

Emergency number: 02085832222

Hull City Council

01482300300

Emergency number: 01482300304

Huntingdonshire District Council

Emergency number: 01480434167

Hyndburn Borough Council

01254388111

Ipswich Borough Council

01473433370

Isle of Anglesey County Council

01248752200

Emergency number: 01248750057

Isle of Wight Council

01983823040

Islington Council

Emergency number: 02075272000

Kettering Borough Council

01536410333

Emergency number: 01536410795

King’s Lynn & West Norfolk Borough Council

01553616675

Kingston upon Thames Royal Borough Council

02085475003

Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Emergency number: 01484414933

Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council 

08006940280

Lambeth London Borough Council

02079264200

Lancashire County Council

03001236701

Emergency number: 03001236720

Lancaster City Council

01524582257

Emergency number: 0152467099

Leeds City Council

01132224412

Emergency number: 07891273939

Leicester City Council

01162212770

Lewes District Council

01273471600

Emergency number: 01323644222

Lewisham London Borough Council

02083147007

Lichfield District Council

01543308703

Lincoln City Council

01522881188

Liverpool City Council

01512333800

Maidstone Borough Council

01622602440

Maldon District Council

01621854477

Malvern Hills District Council

01684579579

Manchester City Council

01612747066

Emergency number: 01612345001

Mansfield District Council

01623463121

Medway Council

01634336000

Emergency number: 01634304400

Melton Borough Council

01664502502

Mendip District Council

03003038588

Emergency number: 03003038588 then chose option 4 and then option 5

Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council

01685725000

Merton London Borough Council

02085453636

Emergency housing: 02087705000

Mid Devon District Council

01884255255

Mid Suffolk District Council

01473825757

Mid Sussex District Council

01444477574

Middlesbrough Council

03001111000

Milton Keynes Council

01908253481

Mole Valley District Council

01306885001

Emergency number: 01372376533

Monmouthshire County Council

01633644644

Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council

01639685219

New Forest District Council

02380285234

Emergency number: 02380285250

Newark & Sherwood District Council

01636650000

Newcastle upon Tyne City Council

01912284929

Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council

01782717717

Emergency number: 01782615599

Newham London Borough Council

02084302000

Newport City Council

01633656656

North Devon Council

01271388870

North Dorset District Council

01258484358

Emergency number: 01685725000

North East Derbyshire District Council

01246231111

Emergency number: 08456058058

North East Lincolnshire Council

01472326296, option 1

North Hertfordshire District Council

01462474000

Emergency number: 01462420600

North Kesteven District Council

01529414155

North Lincolnshire Council

01724297777

North Norfolk District Council

01263516375

North Somerset Council

019344263300

Emergency number: 01454615165

North Tyneside Council

03452000102

North Warwickshire Borough Council

01827719251

Emergency number: 01827718086

North West Leicestershire District Council

08009520079

Emergency number: 01530454789

Northampton Borough Council

03003307000

Northumberland Council

03456006400

Norwich City Council

03449803333

Emergency number:01603412180

Nottingham City Council

01159155555

Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough Council

02476376406

Oadby and Wigston Borough Council

01162888961

Emergency number: 08000839695

Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council

0300 0030650

Oxford City Council

01865249811

Pembrokeshire County Council

01437764551

Emergency number: 08456015522

Pendle Borough Council

01282661661

Emergency number: 01282611999

Peterborough City Council

01733864064

Plymouth City Council

01752305496

Portsmouth City Council

02392834989

Powys County Council

Emergency number: 08456027039

Preston City Council

Emergency number: 01772906014

Purbeck District Council

01929556561

Reading Borough Council

Emergency number: 01334786512

Redbridge London Borough Council

02087084002

Emergency number: 02084781123

Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council

Emergency number: 01642771300

Redditch Borough Council

01527534069

Emergency number: 0152767666

Reigate and Banstead Borough Council

Emergency number: 07699391689

Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council

01443485515

Emergency number: 01443425001

Ribble Valley Borough Council

Emergency number: 01200444448

Richmond upon Thames London Borough Council

Emergency number: 02087442442

Richmondshire District Council

01748829100

Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council

Emergency number: 03003038875

Rochford District Council

Emergency number: 0126852717

Rossendale Borough Council

01706873577

Rother District Council

Emergency number: 01424787868

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

01709336009

Emergency number: 07748143170

Royal Borough of Greenwich

02089212863

Rugby Borough Council

02088548888

Runnymede Borough Council

01932425831

Rushcliffe Borough Council

01159819911

Rushmoor Borough Council

01252398634

Rutland County Council

01572722577

Ryedale District Council

01653600666

Salford City Council

Emergency number: 01617948888

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

01215696000

Emergency number: 01215696883

Scarborough Borough Council

01723232323

Sedgemoor District Council

03003037800

Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council

01519343541

Emergency number: 01519208234

Selby District Council

01757705101

Emergency number: 01653600941

Sevenoaks District Council

01732227000

Sheffield City Council

01142736306

Emergency number: 08007311689

Shepway District Council

01303853300

Emergency number: 01303221888

Shropshire Council

02456789005

Slough Borough Council

01753475111

Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council

01217171515

South Bucks District Council

01895837200

South Cambridgeshire District Council

03450455214

Emergency number: 08456095438

South Derbyshire District Council

01283595804

Emergency number: 01629532600

South Gloucestershire Council

01454868005

Emergency number: 01454615165

South Hams District Council

01803861234

Emergency number: 01803867034

South Holland District Council

Emergency number: 01775761161

South Kesteven District Council

01476406080

Emergency number: 01476590044

South Lakeland District Council

01539793199

Emergency number: 08704286905

South Norfolk District Council

Emergency number: 08081682222

South Northamptonshire District Council

01327322374

Emergency number: 08001601022

South Oxfordshire District Council

01235422422

South Ribble Borough Council

01772421491

Emergency number: 01772625499

South Somerset District Council

01935462462

South Staffordshire District Council

01902696000

Emergency number: 01384679027

South Tyneside Metropolitan Borough Council

03001236633

Emergency number:01914562093

Southampton City Council

02380832327

Emergency number: 02380233344

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council

Emergency number: 01702215000

Southwark Council

02075255950

Spelthorne Borough Council

01784446383

St Albans City and District Council

Emergency number: 01727811155

St Edmundsbury Borough Council

01638719345

Emergency number: 01284763252

St Helens Metropolitan Borough Council

01744676789

Stafford Borough Council

Weekday office hours: 01785 619000
01785619170

Staffordshire Moorlands District Council

03456053010

Stevenage Borough Council

Emergency number: 01438314963

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

01642528389

Stoke-on-Trent City Council

01782233696

Stratford-on-Avon District Council

01789260844

Emergency number: 01789260126

Stroud District Council

01453754078

Emergency number: 01453222104

Suffolk Coastal District Council

01394383789

Sunderland City Council

08007312963

Surrey Heath Borough Council

01276707100

Sutton London Borough Council

02087704442 press option 3 then option 3 again

Swale Borough Council

Emergency number: 01634304400

Swansea City and County Council

01792636000

Swindon Borough Council

01793445503

Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council

01613312700

Tamworth Borough Council

08127709709

Tandridge District Council

01883722000

Taunton Deane Borough Council

01823356581

Teignbridge District Council

01626361101

Emergency number: 01395516854

Telford and Wrekin Council

01952381925

Tendring District Council

01255686438

Emergency number: 01255222022

Test Valley Borough Council

01264368000

Tewkesbury Borough Council

Emergency number: 01452614194

Three Rivers District Council

01923776611

Thurrock Council

01375652820

Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council

01732876067

Torbay Council

03004564876

Torfaen County Borough Council

01495742303

Emergency number: 01495762200

Torridge District Council

01237428700

Tower Hamlets Council

02073647474

Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council

01619122230

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council

Emergency number: 01892515392

Uttlesford District Council

01799510510

Vale of Glamorgan County Borough Council

01446709567

Vale of White Horse District Council

01235442442

Wakefield Metropolitan District Council

01924304362

Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council

01922653405

Emergency number: 08451112836

Waltham Forest London Borough Council

02084963000

Wandsworth London Borough Council

Emergency number: 02088716000

Warrington Council

Emergency number: 01925444400

Warwick District Council

Emergency number: 01926456129

Warwickshire County Council

01926456129

Watford Borough Council

Contact New Hope on 03000120168 24hrs

Waveney District Council

01502562111

Waverley Borough Council

01483523188

Wealden District Council

Emergency number: 01323644422

Wellingborough Borough Council

01933229777 option 4

Welwyn Hatfield Council

08001114484

West Berkshire Council

01344786543

West Devon Borough Council

01822813600

West Dorset District Council

01305251010

West Lancashire Borough Council

01695585223

Emergency number: 08453710898

West Lindsey District Council

Emergency number: 01427613960

West Oxfordshire District Council

Emergency number: 01513432945

West Somerset District Council

01643703704

Emergency number: 01823351411

West Sussex County Council

01903867350

Westminster City Council

02076411000

Weymouth and Portland

01305838000

Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council

Emergency number: 01942828777

Wiltshire Council

Chippenham: 01249706666

Salisbury: 017224344233

Trowbridge: 01225718005

Winchester City Council

01962848400

Windsor & Maidenhead Royal Borough

01628683667

Woking Borough Council

01483743834

Emergency number: 02037013590

Wokingham Borough Council

01189746752

Wolverhampton City Council

01902 554747

Worcester City Council

Emergency number: 01562733178

Worthing Borough Council

01903221063

Wrexham County Borough Council

01978292947

Emergency number:01978264240

Wychavon District Council

01386565020

Wycombe District Council

01494421212

Emergency number:080 09997677

Wyre Borough Council

01253891000

Wyre Forest District Council

08001695454

Emergency number: 01562850053

#HugosEarthquake Response to CLG Homelessness Inquiry Report

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PUBLISHED: 19th August 2016, 14:17 GMT.

Welcome to the official Campaign Response to the Commons’ Communities and Local Government Committee Inquiry into Homelessness 2016 – the first such Government committee inquiry for 11 years. The Campaign did submit a response during the beginning of the Inquiry and have found that, although not quoted in the Report itself, much of our response and concern has been mentioned in the final conclusion.

Firstly, the appreciation from the Committee of homelessness rising in the United Kingdom is positive. #HugosEarthquake also acknowledges this and wants to say that there are a number of factors as to how people become homeless and we all need to act. The Campaign also acknowledges that rough sleeping is the most common form of homelessness which the public see and this presents a ‘soft’ face to a far more entrenched and serious problem in Britain.

The Committee mention how there needs to be better data collected about homelessness figures, and the Campaign fully supports a move towards more robust collection of data through better reporting systems and more frequent ‘counts’ of rough sleepers and the ‘hidden homeless’.

Whilst the Report concludes that one key factor to a rise in youth homelessness (in particular) is because of the shortage of affordable housing, the Campaign would like to add to this by saying that not enough is being done to look at the support networks around the person. We believe that if the number of affordable housing increases, there also needs to be a balanced increase on the tenancy and personal support provided to the individual/s in those properties. With this balanced increase, the Campaign believes that this will sustain the transition between homelessness and independence.

The Report by the Committee acknowledges the importance of compassion and understanding from Local Authorities when they are dealing with people presenting as homeless. Through own experience, and hearing other cases, this is something which the Campaign very much supports. We believe there needs to be a clear level of understanding between staff and the often-complex situations the individual/s are in.

There is a recognition that those who do not meet the criteria to be housed by the Local Authority can be disrespected, and this has been the case too many times. The Campaign recognises that homelessness is not always someone’s fault, even if they are deemed ‘intentionally homeless’ by the Council. The Campaign would like to see a focus shift from finger-pointing to the individual standing in front of the Local Authority, to what issues present and distant past, have led to this situation. The Campaign reflects on homelessness research which states that homeless people tend to have a trauma in early childhood or adolescent years – and this needs to be considered very sensitively.

We agree with the Committee that the Government need to set out guidance about how to deal with people presenting as homeless, in a uniform fashion so no matter which authority you present at, you receive the same response and care. The Campaign also thinks that this needs to go further: The Government need to prioritise homelessness and push it higher up the political agenda. A key principle of #HugosEarthquake’s founder is “to get homelessness into the heart of MP’s, like it’s in the heart of [me]”, and we would like to recommend the general public lobby their MP to help bring this issue to the forefront of Parliament.

#HugosEarthquake has the approach in its philosophy that the issue of homelessness cannot be tackled through Government, funding and organisations alone – but instead with the assistance from the public too. Our ‘Somewhere In Summer’ 2016 Campaign has been focused on how the public can assist and recognise the issue of homelessness, particularly rough sleepers. We fully agree with the Chief Executive of St Mungo’s, Howard Sinclair, when he states in the Report “homelessness is everyone’s issue”. Our Campaign hopes to make this statement a true fact, and support the general public, organisations, Government and the vulnerable/homeless to achieve this.

Talked at length in the report is the many faces and pathways of homelessness and how these are split between personal and societal. Personal being relationship breakdown, addiction, mental health issues etc., whilst societal rests in the economy , levels of income vs. rent/house prices and reliability of income. The Campaign agrees and states that all of these reasons can contribute to the cause of homelessness, and that this therefore means that anyone can be a victim of homelessness, as a result of these factors.
Another aspect to the rise in homelessness recently can be attributed to the fact of the cuts and drastic reforms in welfare/benefit entitlement across all sections of society. The Report states the consequences of these actions which lead to the increasing numbers of homelessness, and the Campaign also supports this notion and wants Government Departments to assess this impact.

The Government position currently is Housing Benefit payment is paid directly to the tenant and then this is expected to be passed onto the landlord or housing association – however the Committee and Campaign agree that this can increase homelessness and the numbers of evictions, based on a possible lack of support or guidance in budgeting and prioritising finances.

Our Campaign believes assessment for a homeless applicant’s ‘vulnerability’ needs to be seriously considered. The current case law guidance states for Local Authorities to assess vulnerability based on comparison with ‘an ordinary street homeless person’. We believe that this is a subjective, non-personal and cruel approach to assessing the need of someone who is in a potentially dire situation. The Campaign is in discussion about how there might be a possibility around this, without a law change: If there was stable rented accommodation – allowing those who are not deemed vulnerable to move further down the list than priority, if they would be willing to house share with others in a similar situation.

The Campaign agrees with the concerns in the Report about the inconsistencies demonstrated by different Local Authorities when it comes to assessing a person’s vulnerability. We believe there needs to be more communication between the applicant and the Local Authority about their assessment, how they assess and what the outcome is likely to be – so as to allow the applicant source alternative housing or support. The Campaign team would be open to assisting Local Authorities or Government about this.

On housing people who are in need outside the boundaries of their Local Authority – the Campaign supports any housing solution to the applicant, however due consideration and understanding must be taken about the impact this will have on the individual/s. There is a long-held discussion about putting ‘vulnerable’ and in priority need applicants in Bed and Breakfast accommodation (within their area) by the Local Authority, and although this is 1. a temporary solution and 2. costly to the Authority and taxpayer, #HugosEarthquake does support this move for single applicants and couples who meet the relevant thresholds.

In the Report, it mentions about the complexities around homelessness and the issues associated like mental health and substance abuse. The Campaign has long recognised that mental health and substance misuse form a major role in the assessment for vulnerability, but also for the individual to access support – or support to access them. We wholly support the increase in raising awareness of mental health and the effects of substance misuse, and will support campaigns for either issue.

As a Campaign, we are fully aware that mental health issues aren’t always acknowledged because they are mostly non-physical and as a response to the Inquiry Report, will be putting mental health (which can include substance misuse issues) as a focus in the Campaign moving forward. In appreciation of the increase of awareness of these issues, the Campaign notes that mental health services aren’t currently fit for demand – and will be looking at ways we can help maximise support to the vulnerable, including looking into volunteers.

In the Report, there is a very worrying section around the vulnerability of homeless women and the link between them getting into unhealthy relationships or illegal activity just for accommodation that night. This issue is rightfully raised and the Campaign has taken note of this. We will ensure that the needs of homeless women are looked at carefully through our work and awareness campaigns and ensure we are able to signpost towards adequate support. Mentioned in the Report – Agenda, an alliance of organisations for Women and Girls at Risk, were a crucial aspect to the Inquiry and as a Campaign we will look at how to work with them.

As set out in our submission to the Inquiry – we fully support the work of a Parliamentary group set up about Homelessness and believe this has been created already. This can only provide a better understanding about the issue of homelessness to all Government Departments, civil servants and Ministers. On connection to the Government tackling the issue of homelessness, the Campaign would like to lend its support for reform of legislation to reduce homelessness and improve services which deal with the homeless however will be waiting until the newly-tabled Homelessness Reduction Bill 2016-17 has been published and make a Campaign response in relation to that document.

#HugosEarthquake therefore concludes that, on the most part, we agree with the findings of the Communities and Local Government Committee Report into Homelessness, and support the work being done by the various organisations and individuals mentioned. Homelessness is everyone’s responsibility, and not enough is being done by Government, Local Authorities and the general public to help tackle this Public Health Issue.

The Campaign has taken some points made in this Inquiry Report which will now form part of the overarching strategy direction for the Campaign and the work we do alone, and in collaboration/partnership.

We would like to thank the Communities and Local Government Committee for accepting our submission and publishing this Report, which can be found here (opens a new window). Any questions or feedback about this Official Campaign Response is welcomed, and can be emailed to hugosugg@gmail.com.


Thank you for reading this Response from #HugosEarthquake. Our official social media Hashtag for this Response is #InquiryResponse.

#HugosEarthquake Campaign – Raising awareness of homelessness and providing better support to the homeless, especially young people.

Contact details:
WEBSITE: http://www.hugosugg.wordpress.com
TWITTER: www.twitter.com/HugosEarthquake
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/HugosEarthquakeCampaign
PHONE: 07889350711
EMAIL: hugosugg@gmail.com

 

#SomewhereInSummer – help rough sleepers find local services

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As part of #SomewhereInSummer and raising awareness – I want you to feel confident helping out a rough sleeper. By this, I don’t mean taking them into your own home – but by linking them up with the existing organisations in the area.

YStreet Linkou can do this by going on the StreetLink website, and giving them a time, town and location and they will pick up the rest of the work. You can also do this by ringing 0300 500 0914, giving the same information.

For any emergency, please always dial 999 or 101 for non-emergency.

Thank you, and please share this post. #HugosEarthquake

 

POLL: Mental Health Lessons in schools

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Research has found that homelessness and poor mental health are closely linked.

Volunteer and mental health Campaigner Jess Anderson is asking you – should young people be learning about their non-physical health?

VOTE NOW! Comments welcomed too.

CLOSES ON 25TH AUGUST @1PM GMT!