Please sign EDM 2538 supporting Crisis at Christmas

Towards the end of last year, a homeless person knocked on my door on a Sunday morning, seeking help with being housed. He knew me to be a local councillor, but I hadn't received any information about homelessness, and I wasn't sure how to advise him. Unfortunately none of my colleagues on Central Bedfordshire Council were in to advise me. I managed to find a page on Central Bedfordshire Council web site that informed me of a duty person who I could ring. That person rang me back and spoke to the homeless person. But the advisor could not provide any shelter for that night in Central Bedfordshire. Instead he was directed to walk to a road in Luton where there *might* be a place for him.

Under the existing law single people are not usually considered a priority for housing and although they should get meaningful advice and assistance too often this doesn’t happen.

As the first place that many turn, councils are in a unique position to assist people out of homelessness. When they fail to do so, those in need of help can be left with nowhere to go and can quickly spiral deeper into homelessness, costing individuals and the state dear. With homelessness rising, we need action now.

Please add your voice to the Crisis campaign by signing this petition:

"40 years after the first Crisis at Christmas, there is a historic opportunity to make the reforms that single homeless people need. We the undersigned demand that:

The Government strengthens the law so that no one is forced to sleep rough.

All single homeless people have the right to receive written advice, real assistance and emergency accommodation when they need it."

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