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New figures suggest 63% increase in number of homeless people in Wales

Crisis estimates there are more than 24,000 people in Britain sleeping rough over Christmas.

A homelessness charity has warned that the number of people sleeping rough on the streets in Wales has increased by 63%.

The new figures released by Crisis show that across Britain there are more than 12,300 people sleeping on the street. The charity says a further 12,000 are spending the night in cars, trains, buses, or tents.

Tents offer shelter to those without a permanent home in Wales.

Crisis say the figures "complete the picture" compared to government statistics as the new data combines local authority estimates with academic studies, statutory statistics, and data from homelessness support services.

Between 2012 and 2017, the charity say the number of people sleeping rough increased by 120% in England and 63% in Wales. In Scotland the figure fell by 6%.

63%
Increase in the number of people sleeping rough in Wales.

Christmas should be a time of joy, but for thousands of people sleeping rough, in tents or on public transport, it will be anything but. While most of the country will be celebrating and enjoying a family meal, those who are homeless will face a struggle just to stay safe and escape the cold. We’re asking members of the public who want to help to support our work this Christmas and year-round – so we can be there for everyone who needs us and give people in the most vulnerable circumstances support to leave homelessness behind for good.

– Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive of Crisis

Previous research by Crisis suggests homeless people are almost 17 times more likely to be victims of violence. They estimate people sleeping on the streets are 15 times more likely to be verbally abused compared to the general public.

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Previously ITV News spoke to a homeless man who suffered burns after his tent was set on fire in the middle of Cardiff. He said it was a "lucky escape" after his dog started to bark, alerting him to the fire.