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"We're ready to get homeless off the streets"

Kath Friedrich from PATH or People Assisting Torbay's Homeless

Plans are in place across Torbay to get rough sleepers off the streets to protect them and prevent the spread of Covid-19

Restaurants and food donations have been 'flowing in' to Path or People Assisting Torbay's Homeless and rough sleepers are from this weekend being put up in hotels.

On the streets homeless people have also been socially distancing themselves from each other, and safety restrictions have been introduced at the area's biggest foodbank.

In a letter sent to homelessness managers and rough sleeping coordinators in every local authority yesterday, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, said: “As you know, this is a public health emergency. 

"We are all redoubling our efforts to do what we possibly can at this stage to ensure that everybody is inside and safe by this weekend, and we stand with you in this.

“These are unusual times so I’m asking for an unusual effort. Many areas of the country have already been able to ’safe harbour’ their people which is incredible. What we need to do now though is work out how we can get ‘everyone in’.”

Kath Friedrich is from PATH or People Assisting Torbay's Homeless which is part of the multi-agency Torbay End Street Homeless group along with Torbay Council.

She said: "We will just now become a food bank and support center on a one-to-one (basis).

"The sad thing is that it's taking a nationally crisis for people to open their eyes and value human life.

"Human life out on the streets is no fun for anybody.
"It's dangerous they have a shortened life and it's become the norm in our society.

"Let's hope when this is all over everybody will be able to revisit these areas and let's hope all our homelessness across Torbay do get a home of their own."

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