Sadiq Khan pledges to eliminate rough sleeping in London by 2030

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More than 4,000 people were sleeping rough in London between October and December 2023 - a 23% increase from the same period in the previous year.

Sadiq Khan has pledged to end rough sleeping in London by 2030 if he is re-elected as mayor.

According to the latest quarterly Combined Homelessness and Information Network (CHAIN) report, 4,389 people were recorded as sleeping rough in London between October and December 2023 - a 23% increase from the same period in the previous year.

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In a speech on Monday the Labour incumbent pledged to “end the indignity, fear and isolation felt by those forced to endure a life on the street once and for all”.

City Hall’s current 2023/24 budget to tackle rough sleeping is £36.3m.

Mr Khan’s latest manifesto pledge includes an additional £10m investment to fund an expanded network of ‘Ending Homelessness Hubs’ across the city.

The hubs are designed to help an additional 1,700 rough sleepers off the streets every year providing specialist assessment and support.

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Sadiq Khan has pledged to end rough sleeping in London by 2030Sadiq Khan has pledged to end rough sleeping in London by 2030
Sadiq Khan has pledged to end rough sleeping in London by 2030 | Getty Images

Mr Khan has pledged to strengthen joint-working with London’s councils and charities helping rough sleepers.

In his speech, the Labour incumbent said it is time “to reject the notion that homelessness is some natural, stubborn feature of modern life that we have no option but to abide”.

He described the election as an opportunity to “condemn the scandal of rough sleeping to history, not just for a short time but for all time”.

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Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall branded the pledge as “another promise that Sadiq Khan will fail to deliver”.

“Given his appalling record on housing. Sadiq Khan has only started building 4% of the affordable homes he promised in the latest programme, and it is his failure that has kept people stuck in temporary accommodation and made it harder to get rough sleepers off the streets,” said Ms Hall.

 "We cannot solve homelessness without solving the housing crisis, which is why I have pledged to build more family homes Londoners can afford."

Green mayoral candidate Zoë Garbett described the £10m pledge as a “drop in the ocean compared to what is needed to get people housed”.

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“Data from Centrepoint showed that Newham Council alone needs £32m to end homelessness in the borough,” said Ms Garbett.

“London is going to need a big change in government policy to help people experiencing homelessness. It’s all well and good highlighting the Conservative candidate’s record of supporting the devastating cuts but nationally Labour have repeatedly refused to commit to reversing the cuts and have committed themselves to the same disastrous economic policy of the current government.”

Independent mayoral candidate Natalie Campbell has pledged to end youth homelessness by implementing London’s first tourist levy.

Liberal Democrat mayoral candidate Rob Blackie said: "The mayor has missed his own housing targets almost every year since he has been elected.

"I will build much more by making it easier to build, and launching a London development company to accelerate housebuilding.”

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