Mental Health

The UK’s Homeless Crisis

Homeless article

There are an estimated 320,000 homeless people in England alone *source Shelter and this figure is rising year upon year. Every day, more and more people are finding themselves without a permanent roof over their heads.

Many things can result in somebody losing their home; mental health issues, substance abuse, domestic violence, leaving prison, relationships breaking down, financial hardship and eviction, repossession, rent increases and a lack of affordable housing. Often, the causes are outside of the individual or family’s control. Children often go hungry as their parents rely on the support of food banks to survive.

Homelessness is mainly classed as sleeping rough on the streets; park benches, doorways, underpasses; but it also includes sofa-surfing, and families being forced to live in overcrowded, cramped and dilapidated accommodation. For the homeless, day to day life can be a massive struggle; they are often victims of verbal and physical abuse and are more likely to develop serious and sometimes life-threatening health conditions.

The homeless often have to fight to gain access to the services they require to help improve their quality of life, due to not having a permanent address or suitable identification. With so many odds stacked against them, it is an undeniable fact that the homeless are more likely to feel helpless, worthless, and invisible to the world, and as a result, are more at risk of suicide.

Another issue facing the majority of the homeless who suffer from drug and alcohol addiction, is many charities are unwilling to provide a bed and hot meal for the night if the individual is intoxicated, which can result in many turning down help offered. Around 88% of the homeless will require help with drug and alcohol dependency.

Sadly, homelessness is on the increase, with the added trauma of COVID also causing people to lose their homes due to unemployment and lack of financial support.

Safe Space Movement is able to provide advice/support and signpost on to agencies/services that can help. Just reach out to us if you are struggling in any way. You do not have to go through this alone.

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