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thePavement is the free magazine for the UK's homeless people

We are committed to publishing objective reportage, tailored to a homeless readership, and to publicising the complete range of services available to homeless people, to reduce hardship amongst our readers and to enable them to guide their future.

We believe that drives to produce homogenous services for homeless people are misguided, and that a range of service types and sizes are the only way to cater successfully for our diverse readership.

We believe that sleeping rough is physically and mentally harmful; however, we do not preach to those who chosen to, nor do we believe that all options to get off the streets are necessarily beneficial to long-term health and happiness.



Your rights

The Rights Guide for Rough Sleepers outlines your rights around arrest, stop and search, answering police questions, move-ons, no-drinking zones, sleeping rough, taking a pee in public and highway obstruction. It was put together by The Pavement, Housing Justice, Liberty and Zacchaeus 2000.

If your benefits have been sanctioned (cut off or reduced) and you feel this is unfair, you can appeal. Print this letter and hand it in at the office where you sign on. If you feel you need more advice about sanctions, contact  Zacchaeus 2000 or your nearest  Citizen’s Advice Bureau. And let us know at The Pavement!



If you are a journalist with some free time to research and write stories for the magazine, please contact us . For other volunteering opportunities, please approach organisations listed on our Services pages or your local volunteer centre


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In the latest issue


On 5 November, the names of 192 people who died homeless over the past year were read out at the annual service of remembrance at St Martin- in-the-Fields. Friends from the street and from the services they used told stories about them, and humour was mixed with the sadness. And The Choir with No Name and...


Ann Samson – and her brothers and sisters – were painted by Scottish artist Joan Eardley in the 1950s when they were children living in Towhead, a deprived area of Glasgow.

Now the family is due to be given recognition by a new play about the late artist Joan Eardley, by Heroica Theatre...


Breaking News

We had half expected it but when it did arrive, handed to...
I am 60 years old. And I am eight years old. You...
The Pavement has launched a short film to show the impact it... has reported that anti-homeless protesters in Manchester looking to challenge an...
"Nothing says "keep out” to a person more than rows of sharpened buttplugs...
Emmaus Merseyside, a charity working to end homelessness, is calling on kind-hearted...


23 June 2015

Our Glasgow Word On The Street project went so well that we are now running it in London. Véronique Mistiaen, lecturer and human rights journalist, led the second session, 'How to tell your own story'. you can read more about the project on her blog, The Right Human. Check out the trainees' blog to follow their progress from newbie to news hound.

23 June 2015

Will you use your admin ninja skills to help a unique small charity working to support homeless people?

Download PDF (141KB)

23 June 2015

Do you want to use your fundraising skills to support a unique small charity working to support homeless people?

Download PDF (146KB)

23 June 2015

Will you donate your a journalism or photography skills to help the homeless people we work to support?

Download PDF (146KB)

04 November 2014

Our Glasgow-based Word on the Street team of reporters and photographers – along with London guest writers, who also have experience of the homelessness – has been working hard on a special edition that tells it how it is: benefit sanctions, a cartoon about hostel life and how football can change the world, for starters. The WOTS team is: Iain Alan, Brenda Brown, Brian Dobbie, Jason Kelly, Peter Kelly, Jim Little, Caroline McCue, Alex McKay, Patrick O’Hare and Roddy Woods. Thanks, team!

19 August 2011

Wow.  The Pavement’s Homeless City Guide, which appears in every issue of the magazine, has made it into New York’s Museum of Modern Art. 

Latest Stories


Legal high users call 999

 01 November 2015

A senior paramedic has warned that ambulance services are being called to deal with a “surge” of emergencies faced by people after taking legal highs.

Sarah Harrison told the BBC that ambulance drivers were often unable to treat them adequately because they had no idea what they had taken.

Harrison, an advanced paramedic for North West Ambulance Service, said emergency services were struggling to cope with the need to treat those falling ill after taking legal highs, officially classed as new psychoactive substances (NPS).

She said: “We have no drugs that counteract the effects of the substances that people are taking. “A lot of the time we are not aware what substance they have taken and what combination, or even what the substance is because they come with different names and different street names.

"So we are having to just deal with the medical effects and treat the patient at the time.”

In October, a BBC investigation discovered some products did not contain the precise ingredients listed on their packaging. BBC Inside Out North West asked biochemists from Liverpool John Moores University to analyse five separate brands of legal high, marketed as Ching, Cherry Bomb, Pandora’s Box Unleashed, Gogaine and Exodus Damnation.In three of the products, they discovered a mismatch between the ingredients listed on the packet, and the contents of the substance.

Legal highs are increasingly used by the homeless population, in part due to their availability and low cost. One support worker working at a homeless day centre said: “We are working on the frontline and we see the devastation legal highs cause. People are just wasting away mentally and physically.”

Meanwhile, Naloxone, the drug used to treat heroin overdoses, is to become available without prescription to homelessness services. Public Health England has announced legislative changes after heroin and morphine deaths rise in the UK by two-thirds in the past two years. The drug may now be used by registered hostels.


With dignity

 01 November 2015

The right to dignified care. © Time to Change

Mental health nurse Christina Clark says it’s important that mental health support is offered in a dignified way.

In the UK, only a quarter of people with mental health problems receive ongoing treatment.

This means that 75 per cent of people are thought to be battling with mental health illness alone or are receiving only informal support from friends and family.

From my experience as an inner London mental health community nurse, I very often hear about the difficulties loved ones face when trying to access help.

On 10 October, the world marked World Mental Health Day, hosted by the World Federation of Mental Health. This year's central theme was dignity and some worrying statistics were highlighted.

An ONS report from 2011 showed that twice as many people in the UK as in our EU neighbour countries reported mental health problems as the main reason for their homelessness. A separate review in 2009 found that just under a third of those residing in direct-access hostels had a serious mental health illness.

Only 65 per cent of those with psychotic disorders receive treatment. Even more alarmingly, a 2014 ‘We Need to Talk’ survey found that only 15 per cent of people who tried to access talking therapies were offered the full range of recommended treatments (as recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence).

Between 2013 and 2014, 94 per cent of people in the UK in contact with mental health services did not spend time in a psychiatric hospital, which indicates that most support was provided in the community.

The worry is that many people are not accessing the correct care owing to ill-informed and damaging attitudes towards mental health, which still exist.

If we do not take the concerns of our friends, family members or neighbours seriously, they could be denied desperately needed help.

The aim for this year’s World Mental Health Day was to challenge the dignified manner in which we treat those who may be facing mental health difficulties, so they feel they can continue to access the support they need without stigma-associated feelings of isolation

Feelings of discriminatory behaviour or stigma can be fatal to someone needing support in a crisis. Failing to provide dignity to others can lead to self-stigmatisation, low self-esteem and confidence, and social isolation.

In 2003, the World Health Organisation declared: “All people with mental disorders have the right to receive high-quality treatment and care delivered through responsive health care services. They should be protected against any form of inhuman treatment and discrimination”.

People should feel they are given a choice and are included in the decisions around the treatment they have access to and are eligible to receive.

A&E departments are open 24/7 and often have psychiatric departments, which you can walk into if you are finding things very difficult, or take someone else to if you are very worried about them.

Below are phone lines that offer confidential, non-judgmental support:

Samaritans (116 123) is a 24-hour crisis line with trained professionals who can help talk through your troubles – you don’t have feel suicidal. FREE (including from mobiles).

NHS 111 (111) will help signpost you to where you can seek support. FREE (including from mobiles).

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) (0800 58 58 58) For men experiencing distressing thoughts and feelings. Open 5pm–midnight, 365 days a year. FREE (including from mobiles).

Mind Infoline (0300 123 3393) For information on mental health. Open 9am–6pm, weekdays.

SANEline (0300 304 7000) For emotional support and information. Open 6–11pm, 365 days a year.

Your local NHS Trust may also offer a crisis telephone line or information on where to access help in a crisis. Check your local NHS trust website for contact details.


Snatched puppy returned

 01 November 2015

Animal rights activists who snatched a puppy from a homeless man in Paris are to return the dog following public outcry.

A video [Caution: you may find this distressing] of the incident was captured by a passer-by and shows activists from Cause Animale Nord struggling with the man as he tries to keep hold of his dog, before capturing the pet and running off down the street. On their Facebook page, the activists accused the man of “drugging” the dog to stop it running away, reports The Telegraph.

A petition on demanding an enquiry was signed by over 245,000 people. The president of the association was released by police after he promised to take the dog back to its owner.


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