Council backs No Second Night Out campaign

Published: 11th Dec 2012

Please note this is an archived Press Release

REDCAR & Cleveland Borough Council, as part of the 12 North-East local authorities, has agreed to work together towards implementing a No Second Night Out approach to tackling rough sleeping.

No Second Night Out (NSNO) is a Government initiative, based on a London pilot which started in 2011, aiming to make sure that no-one new to the street has to spend more than one night sleeping rough.

The five key principles of No Second Night Out are:
  • Identifying rough sleepers and helping them immediately
  • Involving the public in reporting when they see rough sleepers on the streets or elsewhere
  • Assessing needs quickly and safely
  • Accessing emergency accommodation and other services
  • Reconnecting to support, accommodation, family and friends, in this country or elsewhere
Councils in the North East recognise that rough sleeping is the worst form of homelessness, and causes harm to those involved in it, including rough sleepers themselves, their friends and family, and wider communities.

People who sleep rough are more likely to die 30 years earlier than an average person of the same age, are more likely to be assaulted, suffer mental health and have substance misuse problems.

The aim of No Second Night Out is to get rough sleepers off the streets quickly so that they do not fall into a dangerous rough sleeping lifestyle.

The vision of the 12 local authorities is set out in the agreed North East Standard for NSNO: Our vision is to end rough sleeping in the North East. The first step in doing this is to ensure that by the end of 2012 no one has to spend a second night sleeping on the streets.

Councillor Lynn Pallister, Redcar & Cleveland Borough Councils Cabinet Member for Housing and Neighbourhood Renewal, said: We are delighted to be backing this important initiative, which will be invaluable in identifying and getting support to rough sleepers.

The adverse effects of rough sleeping are well-documented and we are committed, along with all other North-East authorities, to supporting this campaign.

The launch of the North East regional campaign takes place on Tuesday 11th December, tying in with a national conference on Rough Sleeping and the launch of a national freephone helpline Street Link. The Street Link helpline, hosted by national organisation Homeless Link, will make it easier for members of the public, the emergency services and homeless people themselves to report rough sleeping.

A call to the helpline will lead to details being relayed to the local authority working in the area where the rough sleeper has been reported. The local authority will then ensure that contact is made with that rough sleeper, to offer support to help them access housing and recovery services.

Posters telling members of the public about the national freephone helpline are going up in each area of the North East. There are also to be posters for local agencies telling them how they can help to make sure that help gets to people who are sleeping rough and what role they can play, and information cards to give to rough sleepers telling them how to get help.

Rick Henderson, Chief Executive of Homeless Link, says: "Homeless Link are delighted that the North East region has joined the campaign to end rough sleeping in this country. Every night, someone sleeps rough for the first time. We know that the longer they stay out, the worse their problems can get and the harder they can be to overcome. A life on the streets can lead to substance misuse, crime and serious physical or mental health problems.

"No Second Night Out is a simple standard that means putting the right services in place so no one spends more than a single night on the streets. Everyone in the North East can take a step to help make sure this happens if you are concerned about someone sleeping rough in your community just call the telephone line, Street Link, to connect them to local services. The North East is leading the way on this commitment and we look forward to supporting them on their journey."

In the current economic climate, local authorities in the North East region have been sensitive to the need to build on existing local services and strengthening partnerships between local agencies, as a way of improving the help given to people who have lost their homes and ended up on the streets.

Also see: Rough Sleeping

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