Dawn Butler, Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities, has criticised the government after new statistics from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government showed that rough sleeping in Brent has increased by a shocking 21% over the past year, with 29 people found to be sleeping rough in Brent on a given night.
According to the official figures, local authorities’ counts and estimates show that 4,751 people slept rough in England on a snapshot night in autumn 2017. This is up 617 (15%) from the autumn 2016 total of 4,134.
Of these, there were 1,137 rough sleepers in London, this is an increase of 18% from the 2016 figure of 964. And of those rough sleeping, 14% were women, 20% were non-UK nationals and 8% were under 25 years old.
Dawn Butler, MP for Brent Central, said:
“I am deeply appalled by these latest figures which expose the true extent of the crisis we face with homelessness and rough sleeping in Brent.
Yet sadly I am not surprised by the figures, as I saw the extent of the problem we face on our streets with my own eyes when I joined St Mungo’s night time outreach shift on the streets of Brent.
Under the Tories’ watch things have only got worse, as since 2010 the number of people sleeping rough across the country has more than doubled – proving the government has no plan to tackle the problem.
We must take serious action to eradicate the growing problem of homelessness and rough sleeping in the borough, that’s why I am pleased that a Labour government will have a new national plan to end rough sleeping within the next Parliament, starting by making available 4,000 additional homes reserved for people with a history of rough sleeping. We must end the scourge of rough sleeping and homelessness as soon as possible.”