At least 80 rough sleepers in Copenhagen on a random night in week 6, 2016

Sidste nyt

The night between Thursday and Friday last week, 14 staff members of the homeless organisation projekt UDENFOR and the homeless unit of the City of Copenhagen took to the streets.

The purpose was to look for and count how many people had to sleep rough on a random night in February 2016. Exactly one year ago, SFI (The Danish National Centre for Social Research) carried out the latest homeless count where, for the entire week 6, 2015, 1470 social initiatives and local authorities in touch with homeless sent in their reports.

Calculations showed that 6,138 people were affected by homelessness, of these 609 socalled rough sleepers and that Copenhagen “accommodated” around onethird, i.e. 227 people.

The night between Thursday and Friday last week, 14 staff members went out on the streets to locate and count rough sleepers during the period 1 am to 5 am. Prior to this, projekt UDENFOR had prepared seven different routes ensuring a wide range of the city based on our experience with outreach street-based work.

During the four hours’ nightly count, we found 80 rough sleepers. “It is worrying and precisely double the amount of February last year when we counted 40 rough sleepers during the joint count with the City of Copenhagen”, says Bibi Agger, professional leader and deputy manager of projekt UDENFOR.

During last week’s count, we did not wake the homeless so we do not have exact data on everybody, but from the data we have got, it was evident that the majority of the rough sleepers were foreign homeless men aged 30 t0 50. Less than half of the homeless slept in groups of two or more, but we also found more than thirty who were all alone on this cold and clear February night.

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