We think that it is possible to end rough sleeping. All public services have their role to play in preventing people from ending up on the streets. This includes health services and the criminal justice system.
Our research into the scale and experience of rough sleeping including enforcement interventions.
Estimated number of people sleeping rough in 2016 on a single night in Autumn across England
This was up by 16% on 2015.
It is time to repeal the Vagrancy Act, yes. But if the answer was ever about whether to criminalise people, then we have been asking the wrong question. If we can see our way past labelling, grouping, dismissing, damning, pointlessly prosecuting and fining people, perhaps we can start answering the right question. What help and support do people need to realise their potential, and how quickly can we get it to everyone that needs it?
The centuries-old Vagrancy Act, which makes rough sleeping and begging illegal in England and Wales, should be scrapped because it is needlessly pushing vulnerable people further from help, according to a new report from homelessness charity Crisis. The calls come as the Government today announces its review of the Act as part of its rough sleeping strategy.