Following the ongoing cold snap over the Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch area, St.Mungo’s are appealing for rough sleepers to attend emergency overnight spaces.
The emergency overnight spaces, located at St Stephens Church Hall in Bournemouth and Poole United Reform Church, 36 Skinner Street, will be accommodating those who are sleeping rough overnight during the severe weather.
With temperatures dropping below 0°C during the night, Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole council have taken it upon themselves to introduce a Severe Weather Emergency Protocol which is expected to remain in place until at least tomorrow – beginning on 18 January.
— Buzz News (@buzz_bmth) January 20, 2020
People are being encouraged to direct those in need to arrive at one of the two spaces at 8.30pm, with doors closing at 10pm.
Andrew Teale, Outreach Manager at St.Mungo’s, says it is vital that those rough sleeping have access have the knowledge that these emergency spaces exist and have access to them.
Teale said: “With freezing temperatures forecast it is vital that everyone sleeping rough in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole knows where to access the warm and safe space that is available for them overnight tonight.
“Rough sleeping is always harmful to your health but in the current cold weather conditions there is a genuine risk of loss of life.”
Teale also added that those with well-behaved dogs will be welcome to attend the emergency spaces.
Meanwhile, Councillor Kieron Wilson, the cabinet member for BCP Council, has urged for those sleeping rough to seek help.
Cllr Wilson said: “Rough sleeping is always dangerous, but during winter weather it is especially harmful as conditions can threaten the safety and wellbeing of people who are sleeping rough.
“No one should have to sleep rough, especially in temperatures as low as those forecast this weekend.
“We would urge anyone outside to seek shelter and come into the warmth where they can receive support. If you have any concerns about someone rough sleeping during the severe weather, please call the St Mungo’s outreach team on 01202 315962.”
Anyone with any fears about an individual who is sleeping rough is encouraged to call St. Mungo’s on 01202 315962 or 999 if they are in need of emergency help.