Reporting service helps rough sleepers in Rother

AS THE days become shorter and temperatures begin to dip in the autumn months, Rother District Council is reminding residents how they can help identify people sleeping rough on local streets.

The council is part of the national StreetLink service and it is encouraging local people to use the online facility to report rough sleeping.

StreetLink is a website, mobile app and phone service that enables people to send an alert when they see someone sleeping rough, helping to connect that person to local support services.

A StreetLink referral immediately generates a notification to the council’s Rough Sleeping Initiative Outreach team. The Outreach team will undertake checks on concerns raised about vulnerable individuals to ensure support is offered as quickly as possible.

The Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI) is a government funded, county wide specialist support service commissioned by Rother, Eastbourne, Lewes, Hastings and Wealden councils that works to help break the cycle of rough sleeping.

Cllr Councillor Terry Byrne, portfolio holder for Housing and Homes at Rother District Council, said: “While Rother may have lower levels of rough sleeping than in previous years, one person forced to sleep on the streets is still one person too many.  

“As the nights draw in and winter approaches, I ask our residents to help the more vulnerable members in our community by using StreetLink to alert the Rough Sleeping Initiative Outreach team to those who may need support.

“Rough sleepers often have long-standing and complex issues and by working with StreetLink and our Rough Sleeping Initiative Outreach team we can provide support quickly, helping to keep people out of the cold in severe weather and assisting them to access services and temporary accommodation.”   

The council also continues to use it discretion to accommodate individuals that have been seen by the RSI Outreach team.

There are currently 165 such placements across East Sussex which are supported by additional Government funding.  

Residents can raise an alert about someone sleeping rough via the StreetLink website,, through the StreetLink app or by calling 0300 500 0914.

Published: 12th October 2021

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