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‘Unacceptable’ amount of rough sleepers in Shrewsbury to be tackled

A new initiative to deal with the number of homeless people on the streets of Shrewsbury has been launched.

HOST is an outreach programme that is aimed at tackling the “unacceptable” number of rough sleepers in the town and to combat anti-social behaviour committed by some of them.

It has been unveiled by Team Shrewsbury and will see a number of groups working together including plain-clothes policemen, a mental health worker and a housing officer.

A spokesman for West Mercia Police said: “There are a large number of rough sleepers in Shrewsbury at the moment.

“This is unacceptable on two levels. No-one should be homeless in Shrewsbury in 2016 – especially with winter fast approaching – and that a small number of rough sleepers are persistently committing anti-social behaviour in Shrewsbury.

“Rough sleepers are often vulnerable individuals who need help and support. Homelessness is not pleasant for anyone, and Team Shrewsbury is providing support through Shropshire Council (Housing Options), The Ark (including an outreach service) and Shrewsbury Street Pastors.”

Team Shrewsbury will also promote the Alternative Giving Scheme. The scheme provides a means for the public to donate directly to The Ark, Street Pastors and the Rough Sleepers Taskforce. Donations can be made at collection boxes at The Square, Pride Hill, railway station and Frankwell.

The public can report concerns at streetlink.org.uk or on 0300 500 0915.

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