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Sleeping Rough: Deportation

Question for Home Office

UIN 114916, tabled on 12 November 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what discussions she has had with her counterparts in the devolved Administrations on the new discretionary powers in the Immigration Rules to refuse or cancel a person’s permission to stay in the UK on the basis of that person’s rough sleeping; whether consent was sought from the devolved Administrations for the introduction or exercise of such a power where housing and homelessness is devolved; what consultation her Department conducted with police forces in (a) Scotland (b) Wales and (c) Northern Ireland on the introduction of that power; what assessment her Department has made of the adequacy of existing levels of co-ordination between police forces in England and the other UK nations in implementing that power; and what team in her Department leads on the implementation of that power.

Answered on

17 November 2020

Immigration is a reserved matter. The new Immigration Rules make provision for the refusal or cancellation of permission to stay in the UK on the basis of rough sleeping. The new rule will apply on a discretionary basis to non-EEA nationals from 1 December 2020 and to newly arriving EEA nationals from 1 January 2021. The provision will be used sparingly and only where individuals refuse to engage with the range of support mechanisms available and are repeatedly engaged in persistent anti-social behaviour.

Tackling rough sleeping is not a primary responsibility for the police unless there is crime or anti-social behaviour perpetrated by a person who is sleeping rough. The police rely upon integrated support to be in place across relevant partner agencies and services to help rough sleepers move off the streets.

The Home Office and the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government are working together to encourage local authorities and approved charities to resolve the immigration status of eligible rough sleepers and unlock access to any benefits and entitlements that rough sleepers may be eligible for.

Answered by

Home Office
Named day
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