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News in brief 122 : September-October 2019

September 01 2019

News in brief written by Jake Cudsi.

Street preaching

The Conservative Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, has admonished his government’s homelessness policy. Street says the government has directly increased the number of people being made homeless, by freezing housing benefits. 

Vagrancy act

As the Pavement went to press, the Government was still reviewing the archaic, draconian Vagrancy Act of 1824. Woefully outdated and clearly unfit for purpose, successive governments had ignored the act, which makes it a criminal offence to sleep rough or beg in England and Wales. A campaign to repeal the act, supported by a group of charities headed by Crisis, has gained crossparty support among MPs and at the time of writing it was hopeful the law will soon be dumped.

Pension problem

A devastating report produced by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Housing and Care for the Elderly predicts the Pavement’s readership is set to skyrocket (although they didn’t report it quite like that). Rental Housing For An Ageing Population, predicts more than 600,000 members of the millennial generation in the UK (people born in the early 1980s to mid 1990s) will struggle to avoid homelessness when they become pensioners.

Shock increase

In late June the Combined Homelessness and Information Network (CHAIN) released its annual report 2018–19 on rough sleeping in London revealing a jump of 24% on last year’s figures.
• Find CHAIN annual reports at