Welfare first approach for rough sleepers

In response to recent national newspaper reports, Cllr Nichole Brennan, deputy chair of housing committee, said: “We have a welfare first approach for people rough sleeping in our city and our council outreach teams do not work with Home Office immigration enforcement.

“We’re working with partners across the city to support the many vulnerable people who live out on our streets to overcome their complex problems, and find the best way to rebuild their lives. Our city has long been under pressure from growing homelessness at this time of austerity. St Mungo's has run the council’s rough sleeper outreach homelessness service since 2015 and has provided compassionate care under difficult circumstances.

“We sometimes help people experiencing homelessness in Brighton & Hove return to their home countries, but will only do so with their explicit permission to act this way on their behalf. We will not pass on personal data to the Home Office unless we’re sure informed consent has been given from the individual concerned.

“Rough sleeping is harmful and dangerous. No one should have to sleep rough in this day and age. I will do all I can to help people in need here in Brighton & Hove.”

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