Work with homeless continues to bring results

November 17, 2010 1:31 PM
Councillor Catherine Smart

Catherine Smart

Cambridge's homeless people continue to be helped by the city council working jointly on the streets with other agencies.

Only six people were found to be sleeping rough in the last street count. Two of those had no accommodation, one had refused a bed at the city's Jimmy's Night Shelter and a further three were not eligible to claim benefits.

These six people are known to the services that work with the homeless and will be helped by Street Outreach Workers to find solutions.

The latest figure represents a steadily improving picture of homelessness in Cambridge and compares to around 20 people regularly sleeping on the streets several years ago.

A significant improvement in the turnover of bed spaces at Jimmy's Night Shelter has meant more people can be accommodated.

A city council report to its West Central Area Committee recently showed that in 2003 there were a significant minority of people who had lived at the shelter for several years. Figures for 2010 show that 80 per cent are now moving on within 28 days.

Cambridge City Executive Councillor for Housing, Catherine Smart said: "I am pleased that on-going work to help these people is really paying off.

"Cambridge continues to attract some Eastern European visitors who are unable to access benefits and who find themselves on the street. This continues to present a challenge to the various agencies.

"But this latest figure is indicative of the work being done on the streets to support people who find themselves homeless."

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