Lib Dems announce plan to end rough sleeping

If elected, the Liberal Democrats have said they would end rough sleeping in England within five years, with plans to introduce a duty on local authorities to provide immediate emergency accommodation.

The latest government figures show that the number of rough sleepers in England on a single night has risen by 31 per cent since 2015, to 4,677. More than 700 people die while homeless each year, with latest figures suggesting that the number of rough sleepers in England has risen by 165 per cent since 2010.

Although the Conservatives, Labour and the Green Party have all said they want to end rough sleeping, Liberal Democrat housing spokesman, and former party leader, Tim Farron said his was the only party with ‘the clear and credible policies’ to tackle the issue.

Amongst the ‘credible’ policies, the Lib Dems list plans to scrap the Vagrancy Act and introduce a ‘somewhere safe to stay’ duty on local authorities to provide immediate emergency accommodation. The party also hope to increase Local Housing Allowance payments, provide accommodation and support for survivors of domestic abuse and abolish Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions.

Farron said: "Nobody should have to spend a night sleeping on the streets. It is the most shameful example of the failure of this Conservative government to provide a safety net for those who need it. We will make sure that everyone has a decent home so they can live with dignity."