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Homeless campaigners set up protest camp in Leeds

Campaigners have set up a protest camp in Leeds city centre to call for more support for the city's homeless people.

Leeds Homeless Action Group along with two other charities erected their tents five days ago outside the city's art gallery. 45 people are currently living there in a bid to get their message out about the lack of help and housing for vulnerable people.


West Yorkshire Police slammed over 'disgraceful' tweet

The tweet, which has since been deleted.

West Yorkshire Police has come under fire after tweeting a picture of an apparently homeless couple shortly after seizing the car they were living in, because it had no insurance. They added to the tweet the hashtag '#luggagewalkofshame .

The tweet has attracted fierce criticism on social media where it was branded 'cruel', 'disgraceful' and 'horrible'. There are even calls for the couple to be found and to get their insurance paid through crowdfunding.

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In response, West Yorkshire Police has issued a statement about the tweet:

"This is clearly an inappropriate tweet which we have immediately removed from our Twitter account, and we are looking into the circumstances as to why it has been posted.

"Regardless of any offences people have committed they still deserve their human dignity and we would apologise for the offence this has caused."

– West Yorkshire Police, spokesperson

Extra winter beds available for homeless in Doncaster

Doncaster Council wants to ensure there is help available for homeless people during the winter months Credit: PA file photo

Extra beds for homeless people in Doncaster are being provided over the winter. The council has increased the amount of overnight accommodation for the homeless between December and March.

Ten beds have been set aside at Wharf House in Doncaster town centre. Anyone who is homeless can call in to find support.

The Deputy Mayor Glyn Jones, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “Although our rough sleeper count is low in Doncaster, our aim is that no Doncaster resident will be without a bed during the cold winter months.”

The M25 Housing and Support Group will also be running a Boxing Day Café at the United Reformed Church, Hallgate, Doncaster, on 26.12.13- all welcome to attend, with festive hot food being served between 12 noon and 1.30 pm.

Hundreds of homeless children in region

727 children in Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire were found to be homeless

Charity Shelter is launching an emergency appeal after official figures revealed that 727 children in Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire are homeless and in temporary accommodation.

Many live in cramped and difficult conditions in emergency hostels or B&Bs.

A report by the charity found many families living together in a single room, many sharing beds and eating on the floor. There were also incidences of very disturbing incidents witnessed by children, including open drug use and threats of violence.

The charity conducted an investigation with 25 families in England currently or recently living in B&Bs. One family reported sharing a cooker and a fridge with 22 other people.

With homelessness rising, the charity is asking for donations to fund its work helping homeless children.

Campbell Robb, from Shelter, said: "Our shocking findings have uncovered the shameful conditions homeless children will be living in this Christmas.

"Parents and children sharing beds, children forced to eat on the floor and being threatened with violence in the place they live: this shouldn't be happening in twenty-first century Britain."


Homeless support services get grant

Services supporting former homeless people may be extended after a charity which provides a home and meaningful work to those who have previously experienced problems was handed a £25,000 grant.

Emmaus Leeds was given the funding by the Lloyds TSB Foundation for England and Wales, and the charity will use the money to fund the salary of an administrator.

The charity is also hoping to increase its case load, supporting 28 people per year instead of 26.

Emmaus currently provides 26 rooms, giving a home to people who have struggled with drugs or alcohol, or mental health issues.

Residents are involved in the running of a charity shop, coffee shop and furniture recycling operation.

This grant will help us to fund an essential role at the charity.

"Emmaus provides beneficiaries with safe accommodation and the work skills they need to regain their self-confidence and self-esteem and move into a more independent way of living."

– Ali Ward, Emmaus Leeds general manager

Restauraunt to provide free food for homeless

St. George's Crypt, Leeds Credit: ITV Yorkshire

The Casa Mia Millennium restaurant in central Leeds has teamed up with nearby St George’s Crypt to launch a pioneering scheme to provide free food and drink for the city’s poor and homeless.

The scheme, based on the Italian goodwill tradition caffe sospeso, is called Suspended and Delivered.

“Like most good ideas, it is very simple. Suspended and Delivered enables our customers to buy an extra coffee, tea, soft drink or a pizza or lasagne, which is then available for anyone with a St George’s Crypt voucher to claim," said restaurant boss Francesco Mazzella.

“We will deliver our food and drink to the Crypt to make the whole process easier. Our customers can also buy suspended items on line when they order a takeaway at

Martin Patterson,of St George’s Crypt, said : “We are tremendously grateful to Casa Mia for being our partners in this wonderful initiative. We never cease to be amazed by how generous people are."

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