It shames us all that deaths of homeless people have risen by a quarter over the last five years. This grim statistic is hardly surprising when you consider that homelessness and rough sleeping have also rocketed, while the organisations saving lives have been cut or cancelled completely. This includes drugs and alcohol counselling and mental health services.
In the Commons today, I spoke about the 50 homeless people that died in Bristol over the last five years, as identified by Michael Yong at the Bristol Post. Beyond the horrifying statistics, Michael’s research shows each death was a human tragedy, many of them mysterious, others involving violence, drugs and abuse.
The government must take responsibility for this shameful situation and make homelessness a public health priority, before more people die on our streets.