There is something you can actually do if you see a homeless person sleeping in the snow.
Britain will be experiencing one helluva cold week as we near the end of February, with some parts sinking lower than that of the Arctic circle.
But while freezing weather is only a hindrance to us walking to and from shelter, for those sleeping rough it’s a 24/7 problem.
It can pose a great risk to people’s lives, as the case of 38-year-old Paul Williams who froze to death in Birmingham last December proves. He ‘was missed’ at a Christmas dinner, later to be found ill by volunteers who’d tried to help him.
However, there are things the rest of us can do if we pass by a rough sleeper in the snow in the form of homelessness charity StreetLink.
Emergency shelters have opened in London this week due to the severe weather alteration.
On their website, StreetLink writes:
If you are concerned about someone sleeping rough in England or Wales, you can use this website to send an alert to StreetLink.
The details you provide are sent to the local authority or outreach service for the area in which you have seen the person, to help them find the individual and connect them to support.
With temperatures dropping across London tonight & this w/e @MayorofLondon has opened emergency shelters to ensure people sleeping rough have somewhere warm to stay. Please show your support by donating or tell us via https://t.co/GHb8gNJR1U https://t.co/vYE2iCFWaF
— Street_Link (@Tell_StreetLink) February 23, 2018
All they ask from you is to provide the following information:
1) A specific location for the rough sleeping site. You can do this by using a map to pinpoint the exact location and then providing a written description of the location.
2) Details of the time that the rough sleeper has been seen at the location.
3) Any information about the rough sleeper that will help find them (gender, approximate age, what the person looks like, what they are wearing).
You will receive details of the action the local authority normally takes when they are told someone is sleeping rough in their area and an update on what has happened as a result of your alert within 10 working days if you have requested it.
Spread the word and let’s get some rough sleepers out of the bitter cold.