The Blog

Manchester should be honouring its homeless protesters, not evicting them | Ally Fogg

The fortitude of homeless people camped in the city centre is a reminder of the savage human costs of austerity – and symbolises a willingness to fight back

Poverty rarely breaks into the sunlight and presents itself unashamedly to the world. The usual nature of hunger, homelessness, destitution and desperation is to lurk, shy and embarrassed below the surface of public consciousness.

But since April, a small group of courageous and committed homeless people in Manchester have been refusing to play to that rule book, setting up and holding camp in some of the most prominent locations in the city centre. The collections of tents, shelters and slogan-daubed banners have quickly become an alternative local landmark, part of the vivid fabric of the city, attracting widespread support from the public and increasing dismay and impatience from the local authorities.

Manchester, like most cities, has been attempting to manage the social catastrophes caused by the ravages of austerity

Related: We have allowed ourselves to become blind to the crisis of homelessness | Lauren Sandler

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

I help homeless parents traumatised by losing contact with their children

Parents who don’t look after their kids can be judged harshly. I offer an environment in which they can talk about their children and feelings

St Mungo’s Broadway provides a home and support to 2,500 people who are homeless every night of the year.

It shocks many people to learn that over a third of residents in our hostels and housing projects have children.

Clients aren’t expecting a magic wand. They often just want to talk

Related: Teaching homeless people basic skills transforms lives

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

Free hair cuts and film screenings for Moscow’s homeless, failed by the system

In a bid to help the city’s rough sleepers two charities are providing basic comforts for the growing population. The Moscow Times reports

Moscow’s homeless relief centres are branching out to offer new services, with charities now launching a new hair salon and a temporary film theatre for rough-sleeping residents.

The cinema – held in a tent that usually functions as an aid post for the city’s homeless – hosted its first showing on 19 July, showing a slapstick Soviet-era slapstick comedy to an audience of more than 100 people. Before the screening, all spectators were given a hot meal, tea and fresh watermelon.

Related: Meet the ‘bum blogger’, Moscow’s homeless YouTube star

The homeless need to identify as regular people, not as outcasts

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

Family violence commission told offenders should be forced from homes

Homelessness advocates tell Victorian royal commission into family violence that abusive partners, not their victims, should be forced out of family homes

Violent partners should be forced to leave family homes to stop women becoming trapped in abusive relationships, advocates have told Victoria’s royal commission into family violence.

Homelessness support services said housing in Victoria was unaffordable for single mothers fleeing violent partners.

Related: Family violence royal commission: the seven lessons learned so far

Related: Day one of royal commission into family violence to focus on victims and causes

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

The rise of urban playgrounds for the elderly

City links: Outdoor gyms for older people, crowdsourced flood mapping in Jakarta and guerrilla urban interventions from birdhouses to adult toys feature in this week’s roundup of the best city stories

This week’s best city stories from around the web include playgrounds for older generations, protests against London’s anti-homeless spikes, recycled car tyres helping street trees in Seattle – and an influx of hanging dildos in Portland.

We’d love to hear your responses to these stories, and any others you’ve read recently, both on Guardian Cities and elsewhere. Just share your thoughts in the comments below.

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

Beware inspirational online images – they may be more insidious than you think | Carl Cederström

A photo of Daniel Cabrera, a homeless Filipino, is being used to support the rightwing narrative that there are no excuses for failure or poverty

While walking past a McDonald’s restaurant in the Philippines a medical student, Joyce Torrefranca, spotted a young boy sitting outside doing his homework at an improvised table. It was late in the evening, but the boy could read and write using the lights coming from the nearby restaurant.

Moved by the scene, Torrefranca took a photograph and posted it on Facebook. “For me as a student,” she wrote, “it just hit me a lot, like, big time.”

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

To slash the amount of money spent on homelessness, just give homes away | Susan Campbell

It costs more to keep people on the streets than it does to house them and provide any support services they may need

Last February, the coldest on record for the state of Connecticut, Jack Jakups and his girlfriend, Shannon McLaughlin, lived in a tent on the banks of the Connecticut River in Hartford.

At night, they burrowed beneath piles of blankets with their dog, Cookie. During the day, they looked for warm food and a place to recharge their cellphones. Sometimes, they’d get a little money together and indulge in a few days in a cheap motel where they’d do their laundry, up to 17 loads at a time.

Related: New Orleans ended veteran homelessness. Let’s do it across America | Mitch Landrieu

Related: We have allowed ourselves to become blind to the crisis of homelessness | Lauren Sandler

Continue reading…
Source: Blog

WA police minister blames prevalence of homelessness in Perth on charities 'not doing their jobs properly'

Liza Harvey says the installation of sprinklers to deter homeless people in Perth CBD was appalling, but would not be needed if support services were working

The West Australian police minister, Liza Harvey, has blamed the prevalence of homeless people in the Perth CBD on charities not “doing their jobs properly”, after a government department was forced to back down from a decision to put anti-homeless sprinklers around an arts centre.

St Vincent de Paul and the Salvation army criticised the decision to install the motion-sensing sprinklers in an outside stairwell frequently used as shelter by homeless people as “inhumane” and “inappropriate”, causing the arts centre to turn off the tap just five days after it was installed.

Related: Homelessness advocacy groups lose $21m in federal government funding

You wouldn’t do that to your dog, you wouldn’t do that to a fellow human being

Related: Homelessness advocates say complaints show need for better support services

Continue reading…
Source: Blog