Friday, 26 April 2013


This article appears in today's Leicester Mercury:

Homelessness campaigners camp out at Leicester Town Hall 
Campaigners are sleeping out overnight in a protest at cuts to a council's homelessness budget.
Members of Streetlife Action Group are bedding down outside Leicester Town Hall to object to the city council's plan to cut £2.2 million from its £6.6 million homelessness budget.
The group planned to spend a third night in a tent tonight.
Spokesman Andrew Parsons said: "We are here to maintain our awareness campaign about the cuts in the homelessness budget.
"We are here to serve notice to the councillors that if they don't get it right this is a glimpse of the future.
"We hope the cuts do not take us back to the dark days in the 1980s, when we had up to 60 people sleeping out in shop doorways throughout the city."
The council announced this month it was to save £938,000 by reducing the number of hostel beds for families from 129 to 70.
It is yet to announce the second phase of cuts, affecting beds for single homeless people.
Mr Parsons said: "We fear the cuts could leave us in a situation where do not have enough beds for people who need them.
"Our aim is to make the council think and think again."

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