St Martins is backing the Crisis campaign ‘Home for All’ to take action to ensure everybody has a secure, permanent home.
During the coronavirus pandemic, we have come together as a society to achieve extraordinary things for people facing homelessness – from finding accommodation for people in hotels to protecting people from becoming homeless during the pandemic.
Now, as lockdown eases, we can’t let this progress slip, and go back to a world in which homelessness is accepted as a part of life. Crisis want to use Home for All as a turning point and make it truly the beginning of the end of homelessness.
Crisis is calling on the Westminster Government to commit to a plan that will enable everyone across Great Britain to have the security of a safe and settled home; and to implement the immediate policy changes and funding needed to continue to protect people experiencing homelessness and prevent homelessness for the duration of the pandemic.
People experiencing homelessness, particularly those who are sleeping rough, have been among those who are most exposed to the risks of COVID-19. Not only do they not have a safe home to self-isolate in or follow sanitation guidance, but people experiencing homelessness are also three times more likely to experience a chronic health problem including respiratory conditions. It is therefore critical that everyone has a place where they can self-isolate and protect themselves from the risks of COVID-19. Given the wider economic impacts of the outbreak, it is also essential that people are given the support they need to keep a roof over their heads and avoid homelessness as a consequence of COVID-19.
The campaign is demanding the following:
- The introduction of a new duty on local authorities in England, backed by funding, to provide emergency accommodation for people with nowhere safe to stay in the next 12 months;
- The national roll-out of Housing First in England
- Changes to ensure no one across Britain is left without a safe place to stay because of their immigration status;
- Changes to the UK welfare system, and protections for private renters alongside increased investment in the provision of homes for social rent in England to ensure everyone can afford a home.
Crisis say, “Unless we do something now and enact long-term as well as short-term solutions, this progress will slip and risks being undone.”