Coronavirus forces Kettering homeless shelter to close as council takes the lead
The dorm style accommodation was not appropriate
Kettering Safe Until Daylight has been forced to close its rough sleeping shelter after its dorm-style accommodation was deemed no longer appropriate due to coronavirus.
In a statement on Facebook, the shelter said: "We nearly had a full time year round shelter. Everything was set up and almost ready to go.
"However, due to Covid-19, we have been told that our dorm-style accommodation is no longer appropriate. Therefore, Safe Until Daylight will not be in operation again."
The news was met with sadness from those who had volunteered with Safe Until Daylight and others who have supported the project.
Safe Until Daylight added: "Kettering Borough Council have assured us that they now have adequate plans in place (with the assistance of Accommodation Concern), which mean that rough sleeping will not rise to the same appalling numbers it did over the last 10 years of austerity."
Accommodation Concern is a charity in Kettering that offers housing advice and rough sleeping outreach services.
Kettering Borough Council said it is taking part in the government's 'Everyone In' initiative and is making offers of dispersed self-contained temporary accommodation to "verified" rough sleepers.
It said: "The council, in partnership with Accommodation Concern and other agencies, works intensively with accommodated rough sleepers to try and address barriers to longer term accommodation solutions, so they can remain ‘in for good’.
"Since March, the council and partner organisations have provided 20 entrenched rough sleepers with temporary accommodation and supported 28 individuals who were rough sleeping, or at risk of rough sleeping, into long term settled housing solutions.
"Kettering Borough Council is committed to ending rough sleeping and our current approach will continue, helped with the recent recruitment of a new ‘Rough Sleeper Coordinator’, who will increase our capacity to provide a comprehensive and sensitive response to this vulnerable group."
Safe Until Daylight urged people to stay vigilant for rough sleeping and said: "We would appeal to everyone, that if they see their fellow human beings being degraded in such a way (for mere want of a supervised indoor space with an airbed on the floor), that they kick up hell! Write to MPs, complain to councillors, attend public meetings and highlight the issue as much as possible.
"Kettering has been good to us and supported us well, as has KBC, so thanks all!"
Message from the editor:
Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.
In order for us to continue to provide trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper.
Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the highest standards in the world. The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers and consequently the advertising that we receive. We are now more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news by buying a copy of our newspaper.