National Homelessness News

January 2021

Homeless people face lockdown with no return of ‘Everyone In’ emergency policy

The Government has not restarted the widely praised Everyone In scheme that helped to house rough sleepers at the start of the pandemic

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November 2020

Shock new figures fuel fears of more lockdown domestic abuse killings in UK 

Calls to the UK’s largest domestic abuse helpline are rising “week on week” as new figures reveal that almost 50 suspected killings may have occurred during the first lockdown.

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November 2020

Greggs to cut more than 800 jobs as Covid lockdown hits sales

Greggs has announced plans to cut more than 800 jobs as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The chief executive of the bakery chain said it “will not be profitable as a business” if sales stay at the levels seen during lockdown, as it was confirmed that 820 staff would lose their jobs.

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November 2020

Prime Minister finally gives way to Marcus Rashford in a second u-turn on child food poverty. 

After weeks of increasing pressure, Prime Minister Boris Johnson finally gave way to calls from footballer Marcus Rashford and a number of charities to extend free school meals for children from low income families during future school holidays in England, 

The new government package on offer will include a £170 million Covid Winter grant scheme to support families in need and an extension of the holiday activities and food programme through next year’s Easter Summer and Christmas breaks.  

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November 2020

Covid-19 crisis pushing middle income families to food bank help.  

Food aid charities have identified a new cohort of food bank users who previously held good jobs and enjoyed comfortable incomes but are now claiming welfare benefits for the first time. Members of the Feeding Britain and Independent Food Network say they are now seeing people with mortgages and cars who own businesses or are self employed but have been tipped into crisis due to gaps in the social security system. 

Before Covid, research suggests that the vast majority of food bank users were destitute, however this has now widened. The phenomenon of the so-called ‘newly hungry’ is revealed as Feeding Britain’s network of charities reported massive increases in the amount of food aid they had given out since March

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November 2020

Homeless charities say more support for rough sleepers will be needed this Winter 

With an increasing number of people losing their jobs, the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic is leading to a second surge in the number of people being made homeless.

Despite a ban on evictions, tens of thousands of people have been forced onto the streets. The government has acknowledged the crisis, pledging a £15 million pound emergency fund to go towards housing the most vulnerable rough sleepers. It has named Birmingham, Bournemouth, Brighton, Bristol, Cornwall, Leicester, London, Manchester, Oxford and Salford as priority areas. The homelessness sector is calling for help on a larger scale than the £15 million pound scheme. 

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November 2020

Calls for homelessness scheme to be brought back for the English Lockdown. 

A group of charities and campaigners have called for the government to relaunch its homelessness strategy to protect thousands of homeless people from the second wave of Covid-19. The “everyone in” policy housed almost 15,000 homeless people in budget hotels during the first wave of the pandemic

In a letter addressed to the home secretary, Priti Patel and the housing secretary Robert Jenrick, the group of frontline workers urged ministers to reopen hotels to thousands of rough sleepers. 

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October 2020

Prime Minister finally gives way to Marcus Rashford in a second u-turn on child food poverty. 

After weeks of increasing pressure, Prime Minister Boris Johnson finally gave way to calls from footballer Marcus Rashford and a number of charities to extend free school meals for children from low income families during future school holidays in England, 

The new government package on offer will include a £170 million Covid Winter grant scheme to support families in need and an extension of the holiday activities and food programme through next year’s Easter Summer and Christmas breaks.  

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October 2020

The businesses that stepped in to provide free meals for children

Across the UK thousands of café owners and other catering businesses listened to the appeal from football start Marcus Rashford and took up the challenge of feeding schoolchildren during the school holidays. The businesses stepped in to fill a gap left when the government voted down a motion to provide 1.4 million disadvantaged children in England with £15-a-week food vouchers during half-terms and holidays until Easter 2021 

The volunteer group All Of Us Together has created an interactive map of all the businesses offering meals.  It said at least 20,026 meals were provided by 411 organisations in the first few days of the week. 

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October 2020

One million people sign Rashford’s petition to end child poverty

The England and Manchester United footballer’s petition is one of just five parliamentary petitions to have drawn a million signatures. It calls on the government to extend access to free school meals, to provide meals and activities during holidays and to expand the healthy start scheme for young mothers on benefits. The success of the petition is increasing pressure on the government to rethink its position. 

Labour’s shadow chancellor, Anneliese Dodds said  “It’s unbelievable that this government would refuse to provide food to the country’s poorest children at the height of the pandemic”

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