The Passage welcomes the latest official rough sleeping snapshot that shows a fall in the number of people sleeping rough in England, including a 27% reduction in Westminster.
We were proud to be part of the Everyone In initiative, working with other agencies to protect extremely vulnerable people during the pandemic. The initiative shows what can be achieved when there is a genuine partnership approach, matched with real political will. However, this must be viewed as a starting point; if 2020 was the health pandemic, 2021 could well be the economic pandemic. There will be significant challenges as we come out of lockdown, with the risk of many people coming to the streets through job loss. We must therefore build on the lessons learnt during the last 12 months and ensure that the numbers of people sleeping rough continue to fall.
We also welcome the government’s commitment today to repeal the Vagrancy Act and look forward to working with Nickie Aiken MP, Robert Jenrick, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Crisis, St Mungo’s and other partners to tackle this important issue on behalf of people who are street homeless.
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