Tag Archives: sleep

Do Tory voters even realise they voted to make kids sleep in bins – and risk dying in the crusher?

Sleeping in bins: This young woman was found in a bin in December 2018.

A refuse collector in North Wales found two children sleeping in a wheelie bin whose contents he was about to consign to the crusher.

Think about that: this man would have ended two young lives without even realising they were there.

They – and he – were lucky; according to the Health and Safety Executive, seven people have been killed in the last five years – because they were sleeping in bins.

It’s what our votes have condoned; under the Conservatives, homelessness has skyrocketed.

And their figures on the number of people sleeping rough have been found to be seriously inaccurate, recording only one-fifth of the real number.

The statistic is produced by taking a “snapshot” of the number of people found sleeping on the streets on a particular night of the year – usually in the autumn.

One is moved to ask whether those carrying out the count thought to look in the bins.

Source: Two kids found asleep in wheelie bin by stunned worker about to put it in crusher – Mirror Online

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Official government rough sleeping estimate found to be only a fraction of the real figure

Tory figures on rough sleeping total less than 20 per cent – one fifth – of the actual number, according to research. They have been lying to us.

Even if this is an honest mistake, it shows us that the Conservative government is incompetent.

The Tories have been using a “snapshot” which shows the number of people found to be sleeping rough over a particular night. The latest figure to be reached by this method found 4,677 people, in 2018.

But a Freedom of Information request asking local authorities how many rough sleepers they had on their books found that the total was 28,000 – more than five times as many.

The Tories fix their targets on eliminating rough sleeping – and set their budgets for that purpose – on the basis of the smaller figure.

This means they cannot hope to solve the problem of rough sleeping, using their current methods.

It also means they’ve been selling us a pup – putting forward a falsehood that we are asked to believe in order to feel that genuine progress is being made. It isn’t.

The New Labour government of 1997-2010 actually did cut homelessness, by more than half.

But since David Cameron, Theresa May and now Boris Johnson took over, homelessness has skyrocketed.

And now we know they have been hiding the true extent of it from us.

Amazingly, the Conservatives are sticking by their figures, saying they are “confident our independently verified snapshot provides a good estimate of the numbers of people sleeping rough on a given night”.

Labour has asked the UK Statistics Authority to investigate the accuracy of the Tory statistics.

Shadow Housing Secretary John Healey said, “The Conservatives can’t begin to fix the problem when they won’t admit the scale of it.”

That is the fact of the matter. And how many other statistical lies are the Tories foisting on us?

Source: Official government statistics grossly underestimate England’s rough sleeping crisis, new figures show – Welfare Weekly

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As an unpaid carer, I had to think about these shock statistics about us before realising they’re true 

Unpaid carers save the public purse £132bn a year but get little in return.

At first, I thought I must be one of the lucky eight per cent.

New statistics from Carers UK show that only eight per cent of unpaid carers – those of us who don’t do it as a career but because we have to – have been able to take a break from caring sufficient to, for example, visit the doctor.

Yes, but then I tried to remember the last time I saw a doctor – at an appointment that wasn’t for Mrs Mike.

I can’t remember when that was.

I don’t actually need to see a doctor, mind. That might have a lot to do with it. And I wonder about statistics that say one-third of unpaid carers would use time off to see a doctor.

If the UK is using people with illnesses to care for people with illnesses – and/or disabilities – that should be ample evidence that the system is broken and must change.

Evidence that 44 per cent of those who managed to get time off then used it to see a doctor suggests that the situation is even worse.

So now I was counting myself lucky for a different reason.

Then I saw the statistic showing that fully half of unpaid carers would use time off caring to catch up on much-needed sleep.

I understand that one all too well.

You see, as a carer, you never know when you will be needed. I was awakened in the early hours of the morning because Mrs Mike was in a lot of pain.

It makes for an unpredictable, interrupted schedule. And ruins sleep patterns.

It hasn’t ruined my health – so far. Maybe I’m extra-lucky.

But it seems clear that many, many people aren’t.

Replacement care may be expensive – and poor-quality. And if I want it, I may find myself subject to a postcode lottery.

NHS spending on support for carers varies hugely, depending on where people live.

And the simple fact is that there is no co-ordinated social care system throughout the UK – despite the fact that social care was included in the remit of the Department of Health (and its title) a considerable while ago.

We hear that plans are due to be unveiled every now and then… and then we hear that they’ve been delayed.

Has anybody written a single line of such a plan?

Selfishly, I’m concerned about this. While I’m in good nick at the moment, I can’t be sure that will last forever.

The Carers UK report paints a picture of not just thousands, but hundreds of thousands of people burning out – putting their own health at serious risk – just to improve a loved one’s quality of life for a while longer.

Carers UK wants the Government to double the Better Care Fund, which supports carers’ breaks, from £130 million to £260 million and ensure this money is ring-fenced so that carers around the country can get the breaks they need.

But I think this is just applying a sticking plaster to a wound that is getting deeper and deeper.

The answer is a co-ordinated strategy – not a random and rare chance at an all-too-short break.

Help find this woman before sleeping in bins gets her killed

Have you seen the young woman in the picture above?

She was last seen in Deepdene Gardens, just off Brixton Hill in London – sleeping in a wheelie bin. If she had not been spotted, she may have been scooped up by a refuse collection truck and crushed to death.

This is the risk run by rough-sleeping homeless people if they sleep in these bins – although they may not know it.

I refer you to a story on This Site from December 2014 – four years ago:

“‘One of our clients was sanctioned. He had
no money for seventeen weeks. He was
scavenging in a bin, the lorry came, picked
him up and he was crushed to death.’

“The above is a statement by Vince Hessey, a member of the board of trustees at Birkenhead YMCA (listed as YMCA Wirral), given in evidence to the All-Party Parliamentary Inquiry into Hunger in the United Kingdom, printed in the section entitled The vulnerability of people relying on food banks.

“A decision by a UK government employee, following guidelines set down by UK government ministers, led to a man being crushed to death in a refuse collection lorry.

This was one of many incidents that would not have happened if UK government policy had been different.

The UK government clearly couldn’t care less.”

The young woman who was found in the wheelie bin might have suffered the same fate as the man in that previous story (and others – he wasn’t the only person to die in that manner), if she had not been found and recorded by a refuse collector, as the following clip, placed on Twitter by Chris Furlong, shows:

The clip was subsequently retweeted by @UnityNewsUK, whose author stated: “This girl was last seen sleeping in a bin in Deepdene just off Brixton hill in London. Please can we identify her and get her some help before it’s too late. Nobody should have to live like this.”

Predictably, the clip attracted criticism from some quarters – but it is welcome that the critic was satisfied with the response:

The fact that a person was discovered risking her life in this way has drawn horrified responses on the social media, along with vilification of the Conservative government who put her there with its cruel policies and indifference to the hardship they created.

@kandisholland18 tweeted: “THIS IS THE UK. This is what @theresa_may is ignoring this is what IS SEEN AS A NORMAL THING TO DO! Young and old left in the cold with nowhere to turn. They just want us poor to curl up and be lost forever. The uk government are evil and do not care about us

@nickylabour4eva added: “The Tories are destroying everything good and decent about British society. It’s about more than Brexit isn’t it?”

@DebsaDelight commented: “She was so resigned to her fate. What a monstrous time we live in.”

This was from @pincushion: “Heart breaking – thanks to everyone who are trying to help her. I hate this bloody government.”

For Sarah Harten (@LOVELFCTODEATH), this was the main issue: “So sad. And all these overpaid industries out there. People with more money then they know what to do with. Was the human race really put here to sleep in bins streets and doorways?”

And Pamela McIntosh made this appeal: “How can this be happening in our country? This is someone’s daughter. Please help.”

One person who wants to help all homeless people is Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn. In the week when Housing Secretary James Brokenshire tried to say homelessness was nothing to do with Conservative government policies, Mr Corbyn released the following clip:

And in response to a BBC appeal for suggested ways to end homelessness, Labour-supporting Twitter account Tory Fibs sent the following:

But these changes can only happen when a Labour government, led by Mr Corbyn, is elected.

For now, people like the young woman in this story are endangering themselves by sleeping in refuse collection bins.

If you have seen this woman – or if you see her after reading this – there are many charitable organisations offering help for homeless people; please ask one to make contact with her. You’ll be helping save a young life.

And that’s more than the Tories will ever do.

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What does Chris ‘people aren’t lying dead in the streets’ Skidmore have to say now?

Chris Skidmore: He once said austerity wasn’t so bad because people weren’t dying in the streets. Now they are, and he is conspicuous by his silence.

The Conservative Party’s vice-chairman responsible for policy once said his party’s austerity cuts were not as bad as had been claimed because people were not “lying dead in the streets”. Now that people his party forced onto the streets have started to die, what does Chris Skidmore have to say?

Mr Skidmore, co-author of the Tory screed Britannia Unchained, which infamously claimed that British people were among the “worst idlers in the world”, has been challenged over his claim after the death of homeless Gyula Remes, who had been sleeping rough on the street just metres outside the Houses of Parliament. Mr Remes was a kitchen assistant at Charing Cross Station but was still forced to sleep rough.

He is the MP for Kingswood, which borders Bristol where a survey to count the number of dead homeless people is currently being carried out.

It is a good question, and one that should be put to Mr Skidmore at once. We need to hear his answer – especially as he is now responsible for Conservative Party policy. As Tory policies on homelessness have failed, how does he propose to prevent any more deaths?

That question was put to Housing Secretary James Brokenshire by Shadow Housing Minister Melanie Onn before Parliament went into recess for the Christmas period:

Mr Brokenshire passed the buck, saying it was the responsibility of Westminster City Council to see that “lessons are learned and applied”. We’ve all heard that line about lessons being learned before, of course.

He did say that Office of National Statistics figures show 597 homeless people died in 2017 – an increase on the previous figure of 449. While Mr Brokenshire said his government was “focused and resolute in our commitment to make rough sleeping a thing of the past”, the facts show that it isn’t doing enough.

Meanwhile, Sky News editor-at-large Adam Boulton seems to think he has the answer to the problem of people dying outside Parliament: Move them on.

https://twitter.com/RickBlaine123/status/1076065207468855297

Out of sight, out of mind, is it? Charming.

Oh, and while people are dying on the streets in the fifth-richest country on the planet, its prime minister has been visiting an exclusive shop where a handbag could cost more than many houses.

So much for “compassionate Conservatism” on her watch!

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Deaths of nearly 500 homeless people in a year is no accident – it seems to be Tory policy

I wrote it before and no doubt I’ll write it again: Conservative policy is for homelessness to end after all the homeless people are dead.

Recent estimates have suggested there are around 4-5,000 people sleeping rough on our streets, and the Tories pledged in 2017 to end homelessness in 10 years.

As far as they are concerned, nearly 500 deaths constitute a good start – especially when you consider that the number of deaths recorded in the five years between 2013 and April this year were just 300.

And you’ll notice there have been no headlines about the number of rough sleepers the Tories have got back into homes and good jobs.

At least 449 people died while being homeless across the UK in the last year, a shocking investigation has revealed.

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism, in partnership with Channel 4 News, has found a former soldier, a physicist and a travelling musician were among those who lost their lives.

Violence, drug overdoses and suicide were identified as some of the reasons why they died.

Among the tragic findings, one man’s body showed signs of prolonged starvation. In one week alone, 14 people died.

There is no official figure for the number of people who die on the streets, though a series of reports suggest homelessness is rising.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has confirmed it will now produce its own estimates on homeless deaths.

Source: At Least 449 Homeless People Died Last Year, Bureau of Investigative Journalism And Channel 4 News Reveals

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Teenage group set homeless man on fire – for fun

The scene of the crime.

This is the flipside of the story published on This Site last weekend, in which a woman set herself alight in a local government housing office.

That story was horrifying enough, as it was about a person who deliberately set herself alight, for reasons that may never be clarified, considering the lack of interest shown by the news media.

This one is equally horrifying, if not more so. It indicates that irresponsible kids have been emboldened to believe they can burn property belonging to someone else, and even flirt with murder, with impunity.

It is possible to suggest that government policy is responsible for the shameful behaviour of this gang of parasites; not only have the Tories encouraged an atmosphere in which the homeless are considered to be less-than-human – while implementing cuts that mean rough sleeping has increased by 169 per cent, but they have also reduced police numbers beyond the point at which preventative law enforcement is feasible.

So we end up with a situation in which many people reading the following story will say to themselves, “Who cares if the police couldn’t do anything? It was only some homeless bum.”

Riiiight. But success at eluding capture means these people will become bolder. What will you do when they walk into your home and start making a mess of it – and you?

A group of teenagers are being sought after by police after a homeless man was set on fire in Northampton.

The 49-year-old rough sleeper, believed to have early onset dementia, was bedded down in a bus shelter when they struck.

Bianca Todd, his niece-in-law, was reportedly driving past the shelter when she noticed a number of people standing near him. She got out of the car and saw flames rising from the bottom of his sleeping bag.

Ms Todd said that another rough sleeper told her the teenagers were responsible, although this has not been confirmed by police.

“I went to go and put it out but he was fast asleep, he didn’t realise he was on fire,” she told the Northampton Chronicle. “If his friend hadn’t have spotted him, he would be dead.”

Source: Homeless man with dementia set on fire ‘by group of teenagers’ in Northampton | The Independent

Tory social policy at work: Head teachers seek charity help for families sleeping by bins

East London headteacher Lorna Jackson says that by working with the charity SHS her school has helped more than 100 families with basic needs such as food

So much of the Conservative master-plan for the general public is visible here:

They want to disrupt the education of children from poor families, so they have no opportunity to eclipse the academic abilities of the rich (no matter how stupid those rich kids may be – think Boris Johnson).

They want to deprive poor families – even those earning a full-time wage – from the ability to own their own home, or even to rent one if possible.

They want to make sure there is no way for such people to claw their way back out of the hole that has been dug for them by the Tory government.

Result: Families are sleeping on the streets, by dustbins.

And then the Tories have the sheer cheek to lie to us that the number of people sleeping rough is decreasing.

It was a sight Lorna Jackson, a London headteacher, had never expected to see: two pupils at her primary school sleeping behind bins at the station with their parents. “Mum, dad and the two little children were all sleeping on a mattress they’d found. The family had been evicted and the children had very little to eat.”

Jackson’s school, Maryland primary in Stratford, is in a deprived area of east London. As well as suffering homelessness, her pupils are regularly victims of domestic violence. “I realised that my role had changed. Unless I addressed our children’s wellbeing, their education was not going to have impact at all.”

Source: Headteachers turn to charities as families sleep by bins | Education | The Guardian

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Rough sleeper numbers rise in Wales

Gary has slept rough in Newport for two years [Image: BBC].

Tory policies in action.

David Gauke, when he was Work and Pensions secretary, reckoned he was going to halve rough sleeping by 2022, and eliminate it by 2027.

Does anybody – anybody? – haveany confidence in that crazy claim?

The number of rough sleepers has risen in Wales according to new figures.

An overnight count from November 2017 showed there was 188 individuals on the streets – 47 more than in 2016.

Now homeless charities are calling on more to be done to help change the habits of rough sleepers.

Some rough sleepers say they choose to sleep in tents rather than seeking refuge at homeless shelters while others are asked to leave shelters for a variety of reasons.

Source: Rough sleeper numbers rise in Wales


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Tory-engineered NHS crisis is causing unnecessary deaths – and Theresa May boasts 

Read this, if you can stomach it:

An elderly woman who called 999 complaining of chest pains died while waiting almost four hours for her ambulance to arrive, while in a separate case another pensioner died following a seven-hour wait for a hospital bed.

On Tuesday, an 81-year-old Essex woman called 999 complaining of chest pains, but when paramedics arrived at her Clacton home and forced entry into the property they found the woman dead, according to the GMB union.

East of England Ambulance Service (EEAST) said crews arrived three hours and 45 minutes after the initial call was made on Tuesday.

In a separate case, a Portsmouth hospital has vowed to investigate after an 88-year-old woman died following a seven-hour wait for a bed.

Josephine Smalley spent five hours in an ambulance and another two hours on a trolley in a corridor at Queen Alexandra Hospital.

She died on New Year’s Day, after having a heart attack and previously a stroke.

Now read this:

Image by MP Tracy Brabin of paitents on the floor in Pinderfields Hospital.

Pictures have emerged of patients lying on hospital floors as they wait to be treated – a situation branded ‘”deeply troubling” by an MP.

It comes as new NHS winter pressure figures revealed that nearly 2,000 patients have been kept waiting in the back of ambulances for more than half an hour outside the district’s A&E departments this winter.

Now Batley & Spen MP Tracy Brabin has released what she described as “shocking photographs of patients sleeping on floors” at Pinderfields Hospital over Christmas.

But a boss for the Wakefield hospital, used by many people from the Spen Valley, told the Telegraph & Argus the patients in the photos “may have chosen to lie down, as seats were provided.”

This Writer has to agree with MagsNews:

But what does Theresa May have to say? This:

It turns the stomach.

The Labour Party has it right with the following:

The Conservatives’ betrayal of the nation’s health is the shame of Britain.


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