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Sleepout in Glasgow to try to end Homelessness


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#1 Guest_town_*

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 04:23 PM

Sleepout in Edinburgh tonight 9th December, Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh to help try to end homelessness.  What a night for this as so cold, makes you feel for those who are homeless. Now I think when seeing homeless persons sitting on the street on Union Street would need to stop and ask them if can buy them some food and have a chat, have not done this before as think that some of them are not homeless as seen in newspaper once about a person going home to their house in Torry and then going back out on the street begging during the days, although some of them do look like they are homeless and one has a dog with him and some of them have plenty of money to smoke.  A few years ago they were trying to stop them begging on the streets of Aberdeen and they appeared to disappear, slowly they are back on the streets begging.  Think maybe now we should be a little kinder will stop and chat with them and ask if they can get them any food or should we just carry on walking past ignoring them.  What do you think?


Edited by town, 09 December 2017 - 04:52 PM.


#2 George.

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 05:18 PM

I remember the truly homeless in Edinburgh in the 70's. Dressed in rags because they really did have nothing, the vast majority of them living in a big doss house (On the Cowgate?) because there was nowhere else for them to go. Most out begging but always courteous when you said no. Not the same these days. Yes, there will unfortunately be homeless people but IMHO, the majority of those that claim to be homeless are just on the scrounge.



#3 Guest_Mr.Brown_*

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 12:02 PM

There is no doubt people in this world who are advantage takers but they come in all guises & from all walks of life. I would personally feel that bit worse about being ripped off (& I definitely can not afford to be) by someone who has had the background that has given them the opportunity to be able to support themselves to a reasonable standard, as opposed to someone who for lack of upbringing did not get morality instilled in them. Admittedly only marginally less ticked off! As the old saying goes,"appearances can be deceiving". A persons appearance could be unkempt maybe to the extreme of being dirty & raggedy as a symptom of an addiction or poor health (mental &/or physical). They may or may not be actually homeless. If they have got to this state due to homelessness then it hasn't happened overnight & these unfortunate folk have got to the point where pride preventing them from begging is a luxury they can't afford. As for being able to afford what some of us may see as unnecessary habits like smoking, I know that as an exsmoker for many years now stopping was one of the most difficult things I have ever done. To tackle that when you are at probably the lowest point in your life may be beyond the ability of some. Whether an individual chooses to or not to donate some of their hard earned money to a person begging I believe is their own business but having compassion for others is a characteristic that I personally believe is admirable. I think it is sad that being sympathetic to another is sometimes seen as a weakness in our own character by some. Of course use the common sense your mother gave you in all situations but to have as a default setting in your life that any less fortunate than you are also less deserving than you says more about oneself. As a footnote I have in just the last few days found myself in a very difficult situation that is causing me so much worry it is literally making me lose sleep. Just a week ago I was not expecting this situation. I mention this to illustrate how suddenly & quickly life can change. If you met me you would not guess from my appearance (other than the dark shadows under my eyes) that there is any change in my circumstances. I at least can & am seeking assistance from C.A.B. Not everybody is able to access the help they require as soon as it is required due to the overwhelming need. Homelessness is a sad fact of life in our country but it should not be accepted as an inevitable fact. That shames us all.

#4 Colin

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 12:32 PM

I'm not uncaring but, personally, I do not see the point in a "sleepout". 

 

Taking part in such an event will only really serve to make yourself feel good about homelessness and, although it might help to raise awareness, will do little to change anything.

 

If you want to offer help to the "true" homeless then, offer them a bed or shelter if you can.  Play holy hell with your MP.  Start a campaign against private landlords that charge way over the odds for rent. etc. etc. etc.



#5 Colin

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 12:38 PM

Here's something I found after a little search

 

http://www.walesonli...addict-14015753



#6 Guest_Mr.Brown_*

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 02:00 PM

^Colin I have just read the item you linked to. I have no doubt that every word of it is true & if I were this parent I would feel the same. However not every homeless person is an addict or became homeless because of an addiction. I'm not naive enough to not realise that drug addiction is a huge issue & certainly relevant in a probably large number of cases of homelessness. However it is not the only reason or circumstance that can lead to being homeless. Even drug addicts are not always obvious by appearance & if you do choose to give to somebody you are sure is an addict they will not necessarily have the family support & love that this particular young man has waiting for him. I think his mother hit the nail on the head when she said that her son wasn't ready to face the reality of what he has become (or words to that effect). In this particular case maybe successful begging is delaying him from facing the reality of what he is doing to himself. Though I think it is fairly possible this lad is scared of facing the future without drugs especially as he has had a degree of dependency from quite a young age. I hope he can find the courage he needs.

#7 MuckleJoannie

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 10:30 PM

According to the BBC website donations for charities for rough sleepers topped £3.6m at the beginning of the evening. Which they might not have got but for this well publicised event.



#8 Ghostrider

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 08:19 PM

Glasgow, or Edinburgh OP? You're living very dangerously not being sure which is which. ;)

 

Why is there even 'homelessness' in Scotland to address? There shouldn't be any these days, or have been in Scotland now for years, or not according to the blurb spouted by Holyrood some time back when they launched their 'homes for everyone policy" anyway. Whats gone wrong? Have they quietly withdrawn that policy again once the brownie points they earned for launching it expired, has the conditions to qualify under it become so tight its no longer really effective, or what?


Edited by Ghostrider, 15 December 2017 - 08:41 PM.


#9 Guest_town_*

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 04:58 PM

Just because accidently typed Glasgow instead of Edinburgh in heading and could not be changed after posted it does not mean I am living dangerously at all Ghostrider.  It is the people living on the streets who are living dangerously I would say as god knows what may happen to them and I never really thought much about it until this sleepout on such a cold wintry night and there is homelessness wherever it may be, eg Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow.

 

After this, when next in Aberdeen I am not going to walk past someone who I think is extremely homeless and will try to help one person only, as cannot help everyone and would not have time to, just to bend down to one person and talk with them if they are willing and buy them some hot food and something to drink and something to leave for them to have afterwards also and if they were willing could walk with them to Aberdeen Council Offices to see if could talk with someone to see if they could get help with a bed to try help for them so not requiring to sleep outside, although I really thought a few years ago they were saying before that it was illegal for them to be begging on the streets of Aberdeen when they tried to stop it and all appeared to disappear but appearing begging again, so that was not so I guess or they would not be there now and would be moved on and helped by people in authority.  I know not everyone would like help from a stranger or anyone, I only once asked a man if he would like biscuits and offered it to him as he really looked like he was sleeping rough and was sitting outside the side entrance to Trinity Centre, not on Union Street, he did not want biscuits, I just though you want money to buy drugs and that says a great deal about myself just thinking that and will require to stop thinking that, but what else could you think as not wanting something to eat like that, although I did not offer him anything better like a burger and chips and drink from nearby McDonalds as that would be better than nothing, just thought he was wanting money and that was it and I was not going to give that to someone who I think only wants to buy drugs or cigarettes as I don't agree with that at all, but everyone has their own choice to make.

 

I have had a person who really was not homeless stop me in Aberdeen and ask me for £5 for their tea, I said sorry and did not give them anything as knew that that person had money from seeing they had won lottery and had just been stupid with their money and I guess I was lucky that the man did not assault me, but should have looked after his winnings properly and not done what he had, but not everyone can be sensible with money.

I hope you are okay Mr Brown.



#10 Ghostrider

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 06:18 PM

Just because accidently typed Glasgow instead of Edinburgh in heading and could not be changed after posted it does not mean I am living dangerously at all Ghostrider.

 

It was an attempt at humour, probably a pretty poor one, which clearly failed.

 

As regards your main points, I'm not that cold hearted that I'd let someone die on the street for want of a meal, but as I avoid towns and cities like the plague unless in matters of virtually life or death, I have little experience of meeting people potentially in that situation.

 

I'm just left wondering though, how they come to exist. Between local and national government provided services 'homeless' and 'destitute' should not exist - theoretically anyway, especially after the Scot's Govt. introducing legislation some years ago which they claimed would mean 'no-one need be homeless'. Has this legislation, and the 'safety net' it and other state assistance is supposed to provide, failed? Do these 'homeless' choose to live as they do rather than engage with and involve local/natonal government agencies in their lives? (I could fully understand why some would, and quite possibly would consider doing the same in similar circumstances)? Are they fakes, pretending to be something they're not, or some other reason?

 

Which one(s) applies makes a huge difference to how the individuals concerned are perceived, and consequently treated by the folk who meet them.



#11 MuckleJoannie

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 10:24 PM

People sleeping on the streets is one of the things I blame Maggie Thatcher for. Before she took power I had never seen a beggar on the streets, apart from one or two "buskers". Her government started the cuts in social security that has led us to the present situation.


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#12 Guest_town_*

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 10:30 PM

Yes I agree that in this day and age there should not have to be anyone sleeping rough and begging on the streets as the Government and Council's should help them and people helping them with one meal and leaving something they can have later is only helping for one day and of no use really to them and not solving their problem of sleeping rough and having a terrible time, although we can have a terrible time too with a roof over our heads when we tell the truth and people treat us so extremely wrongly indeed and makes us don't give a damn what happens to us and makes us  feel like giving up on life too.  How certain people in Shetland can live with themselves for what they put honest people through I just do not know, but as long as they are happy and let the honest people feel so terrible that they do not wish to be here says a great deal about these individuals and how they do not care at all about honest people and care a great deal for those who do extremely wrongly indeed!.  It is christmas time, I wonder if these people can sort out what they have done to make a new year worth living for honest people?- I guess the answer is no as they are too engrained in how they are and not nice at all.

 

The lottery winner was the carroll guy who ended up working at tunnocks factory and using a bicycle to get back and forth to work there who I saw in Aberdeen and he was pleasant enough, even when I said that no I don't think I should give you £5.  I like Tunnocks teacakes too much to work there, maybe the homeless would take a tunnocks teacake when they would not take biscuits.



#13 George.

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Posted 25 December 2017 - 12:47 AM

People sleeping on the streets is one of the things I blame Maggie Thatcher for. Before she took power I had never seen a beggar on the streets, apart from one or two "buskers". Her government started the cuts in social security that has led us to the present situation.

 

The truly homeless had been around Edinburgh for a long, long time before Maggie turned up. They have probably been there since they built Edinburgh Castle, and that was a few centuries ago.



#14 Guest_Mr.Brown_*

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Posted 25 December 2017 - 04:10 AM

Just a quick note here. Firstly thanks Town, I am fine. Fortunately for me (& everyone) we have a very able & helpful Citizens Advise Bureau in Shetland & I owe my sanity to it! The welfare system has been made so complicated & "user unfriendly" that I would think that it could be at least part of what leads to homelessness in some cases. It certainly leads to extreme stress! I'm switching off now for a few days so I will wish all out there in Shetlink land a good Christmas & new year however you choose to spend it.

#15 JustMe

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Posted 25 December 2017 - 12:01 PM

We, be it Shetland, Scotland or the whole UK are relatively rich and it is just completely wrong that people should be sleeping out at any time of year.  Sure summer is warmer but it can still rain.  I want to see some sort of night shelter for everyone (and their dogs if needed) available to all who ask for it and without a ban on druggies and alcoholics who probably need help more than anyone. 

 

OK so a few might take advantage of a night shelter and I accept there is a logic in not making them too comfortable for casual users as long as there is a system so genuine users can progress to somewhere better.  At the same if a "gentleman of the road" really wants to sleep out then they should not be stopped doing so.........in the right place.

 

Not sure how this can count as political.  Surely every single politician should accept that we, as a country, should care for the needy although I suspect the left may be a bit more caring than the right.  But all parties should make providing shelter for the homeless part of their next manifesto.



#16 JustMe

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Posted 25 December 2017 - 12:09 PM

Perhaps I should add that few of us are completely safe from ending up homeless.  Break up of a relationship, breaking some silly rule with a council or housing association tenancy,  failing to be able to pay rent or mortgage payments having lost a job or become sick and been let down by the welfare system.  Even having ones home burn down and having forgot to renew the insurance.   



#17 Ghostrider

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Posted 25 December 2017 - 04:53 PM

Not sure how this can count as political.  Surely every single politician should accept that we, as a country, should care for the needy although I suspect the left may be a bit more caring than the right.  But all parties should make providing shelter for the homeless part of their next manifesto.

 

Its political inofar as when you get one colour or another attempting to gain political capital by making claims that they've put legilsation in place that solves the problem, but which turns out in practice to make minimal or no difference. Which seems to be the current situation with this issue, as it often is with so many.

 

You're right, it shouldn't really be political, it should be a matter of morals regardless of political colour, but politicising whatever they touch in the one thing politicians do best.



#18 MuckleJoannie

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Posted 25 December 2017 - 11:16 PM

 

People sleeping on the streets is one of the things I blame Maggie Thatcher for. Before she took power I had never seen a beggar on the streets, apart from one or two "buskers". Her government started the cuts in social security that has led us to the present situation.

 

The truly homeless had been around Edinburgh for a long, long time before Maggie turned up. They have probably been there since they built Edinburgh Castle, and that was a few centuries ago.

 

I mind a few in Aberdeen in the 1970's who had hit rock bottom and were drinking themselves into oblivion at any opportunity. Nowadays all that needs to happen is you fall out with your family and the social security and you've had it. The latest I have heard is that landlords won't rent to Universal Credit claimants as their money comes in too erratically.



#19 Capeesh

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Posted 26 December 2017 - 09:12 AM

People sleeping on the streets is one of the things I blame Maggie Thatcher for. Before she took power I had never seen a beggar on the streets, apart from one or two "buskers". Her government started the cuts in social security that has led us to the present situation.

Selling off our social housing stock and not replacing, although a very popular political decision at the time, has also had obvious consequences for those who can't afford extortionate private rents and huge mortgages and deposits.
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#20 Wheelsup

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Posted 26 December 2017 - 04:35 PM

Maggie Thatcher is so last century. Surely more recent Prime Ministers should hold some responsibility for not fixing things.