‘There was a lot of nee­dles and vi­o­lence’

Home­less teenagers sent to live alone in B&Bs by coun­cils

The Observer - - Front Page -

Dan be­came home­less at 16 and went to New­port coun­cil for help. He was placed in a “scary and in­tense” B&B in the Welsh city for two nights be­fore be­ing moved to a large adult hos­tel for six weeks, where he was sur­rounded by much older drug and al­co­hol users. “It was aw­ful. Very dingy. The bath­room was dis­gust­ing, there were nee­dles all over the place,” he said. “There was a lot of noise, vi­o­lence, po­lice com­ing back and forth con­stantly.”

He had nowhere to wash clothes or to shower. “I had to go to the leisure cen­tre to use the show­ers.”

No one from the coun­cil or so­cial ser­vices, he said, came to see him while he was at the hos­tel. “I was scared. I didn’t know what to do.” New­port city coun­cil said it was re­view­ing its pro­ce­dures as a re­sult of Dan’s case. It said it should have sup­ported him sooner. “How­ever, given the de­mands on ac­com­mo­da­tion for home­less in­di­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies with young chil­dren, it is un­likely that the out­comes for Daniel in that emer­gency pe­riod af­ter he came to the coun­cil for help would have been dif­fer­ent,” it said.

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