01 Sep 359 Local People Say It’s Time To End Street Homelessness
A total of 359 people from Southend and the surrounding areas added their name to a campaign to end street homelessness by HARP, Southend’s Homeless Charity.
HARP launched their “It’s Time” campaign to rally people in the Southend area to help make the most of the good work done to get people off the streets during lockdown and ensure that no-one has to return to rough sleeping after Covid.
The charity invited people in the constituencies of Southend West and Rochford & Southend East to sign a letter to Sir David Amess MP and Mr James Duddridge MP, asking the MPs to use their influence in Parliament to make a real, lasting impact on street homelessness. The letter was sent to the MPs earlier this week.
Jackie Bliss, HARP’s Chief Executive, said: “We are blown away by the sheer number of people who chose to stand with HARP to say It’s Time to end street homelessness. This phenomenal response shows how this issue matters to the people of Southend.”
Of the 359 signatories, 127 were from the Rochford & Southend East constituency and 152 from Southend West, with 80 people showing their support from other constituencies in South Essex and beyond.
Jackie continued: “Based on previous conversations I’ve had with our MPs, I’m confident that they will welcome the support being shown by their constituents for our campaign. We know they are already sympathetic to the cause of homelessness, and they have the opportunity now to really use their influence in Parliament to impact Government policy, funding and support which could make sure that no one is forced to live on the streets after Covid. A return to pre-Covid levels of homelessness is unthinkable.”
HARP supports people who are homeless or at risk of losing their home in Southend. The charity provides housing and support to people staying in their 223 rooms on their journey to independent living, and gives advice and guidance to people at risk of losing their home. Homeless people in need can also visit HARP’s Bradbury Day Centre to get food, clothing and a shower, on an appointment only basis at present, as well as get the practical support they need to help them escape the streets.