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Number of rough sleepers in Cornwall drops

Number of rough sleepers in Cornwall drops

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 2:26pm 17th December 2018. (Updated at 2:33pm 17th December 2018)

The number of people sleeping rough in Cornwall has dropped.

Official figures show that it is currently 53 - which is a 22% drop.

Whilst the Duchy still has a relatively high number, it has dropped from 68 reported in November 2017 and 99 the year before.

This makes a 46% reduction in the total number of rough sleepers recorded since November 2016.

The figures come from the annual estimate on the number of rough sleepers in Cornwall counted on a typical night in November 2018.

"Through the Council's Rough Sleeper Reduction Strategy and the MHCLG-funded Rough Sleeper Initiative, the Council has worked with its partners to introduce new support services and it is evident that this is making a continued impact in keeping people off the streets.

"The excellent partnerships that work with rough sleepers need to keep the momentum going as we are still committed to ensuring that no one is forced to sleep rough in Cornwall and we continue to work to make that goal a reality."

Cornwall Council's Cabinet Member for Homes Andrew Mitchell

In July 2017, the Council launched a £1.1 million approach to preventing and reducing rough sleeping with £850,000 coming from Cornwall Housing and £292,000 from a successful bid to the previously named Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) for Nos Da Kernow (No First Night Out).

In July 2018, MHCLG awarded the Council £437,489, with a further provisional award of £625,009 for 2019/20

The principle behind the strategy is to step in early to help those threatened with having to sleep rough as well as improving greater access to transitional housing and support services.

homeless child

The multi-agency rough sleeper reduction strategy works to:

  • prevent rough sleeping in the first place by helping those most at risk
  • help new rough sleepers quickly access housing, help and support 
  • identify and provide support for entrenched rough sleepers to help them off the streets permanently.

"We are really pleased the partnership is reducing the numbers.

"We all acknowledge we still have much work to do, but are totally committed to ending rough sleeping in Cornwall.

"All partners will continue to work diligently together to meet this aim."

Steve Ellis, CEO at St Petroc's

New initiatives introduced this year include additional Assertive Outreach Workers and Cold Weather Provision in Penzance, both delivered in partnership with St Petroc's and 6 additional crisis beds, delivered in partnership with Coastline Housing.

There is also specialist support for existing rough sleepers, many of whom have complex needs and housing histories, to help them to move away from the streets permanently.

The Cornwall Rough Sleeper Operational Group (CRSOG) which includes Cornwall Council, Cornwall Housing Ltd, Coastline Housing, Voluntary Sector Providers, Safer Cornwall, the Drug and Alcohol Action Team, Devon & Cornwall Police, Public Health (including Mental Health Services) and Inclusion Cornwall work together to help and support individuals with complex needs and develop joint solutions for them.

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