Branch Secretary :

Plan to deport rough sleepers revived

Two homelessness charities named


The Home Office has revived its plans to use rough sleeper’s data to deport them according to today’s Observer. The Single Homeless Project (SHP) and Camden Routes off the Streets are named as participants although SHP apparently withdrew after being approached by Liberty.


The Observer and Aaron Walawalkar of Liberty have found that two charities and six councils have signed up to the scheme since it was relaunched six months ago.  The Unite housing workers branch represents many front-line homelessness workers and campaigned to expose and stop the practice of deportation carried out by St Mungo’s and Thames Reach homelessness agencies and supported the work of the Public Interest Law Centre which led to the practice in an earlier form being ruled unlawful.


Unite charter to stop deportations


The Unite housing workers branch launched a charter last year committing organisations to avoid information sharing leading to involuntary deportation.


It is reported that the Home Office claim that the scheme is based on informed consent, but The Observer cites legal advice which suggests that because of the vulnerable position of rough sleepers and the power imbalance it is hard to see how rough sleepers would be giving proper GDPR-compliant consent.


Unite will support members


Benjamin Morgan, Public Interest Law Centre’s EU homelessness coordinator, is also quoted: “In our casework experience, rough sleepers – especially those who do not speak fluent English – end up being asked to sign all sorts of documents without necessarily understanding the implications of what they are doing.”


Unite will support members in the sector who take appropriate action to prevent involuntary sharing of rough sleeper information and other unethical practices.  See our initial report on deportations from four years ago here.


Paul Kershaw


Sunday 28 March 2021



Comments :

it can never be right to deport the homeless in our cities . i fact I would judge this to be a totally illegal act homeless people need help and support and protection from the government regulations

By wilson bennet on 2021-04-01 09:39:42


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