Homelessness on Cardiff busiest streets

11 December 2018

Homelessness is becoming an increasing problem in Cardiff, especially on Queen’s Street and St Mary’s street, two of the busiest and crowded areas in the city.

The Chief Executive of the Huggard Centre, Richard Edwards, says the popularity of these streets comes down to financial reasons. He says ” if you have a heroin addiction you have to raise ¬£80 a day, you have to spend time in very public and visible places talking to people, engaging with their empathy¬† and their sympathy to try and generate the money you need to fuel this addiction”. For this reason he says people need to stop giving the homeless on the streets money, as this is not helping them overcome their problems but fueling them, “if people really want to help the homeless they need to help charities like ours that tackle the problems and help them come out of this status. If you saw a man on the street feeling ill you wouldn’t go into a chemist and buy him a first aid kit, you would call an ambulance. This analogy applies to the homeless in the same way”.

CJS News spoke to a number of homeless people on Queen’s Street and St Mary’s Street who say they choose these areas because they are the busiest streets in Cardiff and they are more likely to get money, food and drinks. They say they prefer to sit there than they seek help from charities because they don’t feel like anything is being done for them and feel more exposed than on the streets.

Amy, who is 45, says ” I went to charities in the past but I was beaten up and abused by the other homeless people in there, it feels like we are segregated rather than being reintroduced into society. I feel safer on the streets”.

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