Birmingham City Council has provided guidance on how to assist rough sleepers at risk of being caught up in the harsh weather conditions during Storm Eunice.

Due to Storm Eunice, an official Severe Weather Emergency Protocol remains activated across Birmingham to help people sleeping rough.

During storms and freezing temperatures, Birmingham City Council activates the Severe Weather Emergency Protocol (SWEP) and redouble their efforts to encourage anyone remaining on the streets to come into accommodation.

Police, fire crews and paramedics were sent to Holme Lacy House Hotel in Hereford Hereford Council
Police, fire crews and paramedics were sent to Holme Lacy House Hotel in Hereford

Outreach workers commissioned by the Council are also working on the streets to help people sleeping rough, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day – and they will be on the look out for vulnerable individuals during the extreme weather conditions which have caused disruption and even death across the UK.

Three people have been killed on roads as Storm Eunice hit the UK, including a woman in her 30s who died in north London, a man in his 50s has died in Merseyside and a man in his 20s has died in Hampshire.

A Birmingham Bullring employee removes outdoor bins during Storm Eunice to prevent them becoming a safety hazard Adam Yosef
A Birmingham Bullring employee removes outdoor bins during Storm Eunice to prevent them becoming a safety hazard

Several other people have been injured by falling trees and flying debris, while another man has died in the Republic of Ireland.

Almost 15,000 homes were left without power in the West Midlands, while the storm has brought widespread travel disruption with hundreds of trains and flights cancelled. In London, parts of the O2 Arena’s roof have been shredded by the intense winds.

An amber warning for wind has been in place across the Midlands, southern England and Wales during the worse of the high speed winds.

How you can help the homeless?

Change into Action public message from Birmingham City Council and WMCABCC
Change into Action public message from Birmingham City Council and WMCA

As the rough weather continues, even as Storm Eunice passes by, homeless individuals and rough sleepers remain extremely vulnerable and are urged to seek shelter.

This includes an accommodation offer for all, substance misuse workers, health workers, and youth workers.

Birmingham City Council recommends anyone needing shelter to use the following services:

If anyone is concerned about someone who may be sleeping rough they need to notify the team through www.streetlink.org.uk – the outreach team follow up on every notification.

A bag caught on a tree in Birmingham city centre blows in the high winds during Storm Eunice Adam Yosef
A bag caught on a tree in Birmingham city centre blows in the high winds during Storm Eunice

Anyone at risk of homelessness should seek support to prevent their homelessness. Birmingham City Council provides a number of routes for this which can be found here: www.birmingham.gov.uk/homeless, including their partnerships with organisations such as Trident Reach, Sifa-Fireside, Birmingham & Solihull Women’s Aid, St Basil’s and Spring Housing.

In a statement, the council stated they understand that many people want to help a person who is homelessness. They explained a great way to do that is through supporting Change Into Action, which they believe is a better way to financially help someone who is sleeping rough rather than giving money directly to someone begging on the street. All funds given go directly to help homeless individuals supported by these partner agencies.

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