23 Mar 2020

Bristol City Council calls for accommodation to house the city’s homeless during the coronavirus crisis

450 rooms needed to house rough sleepers and the homeless. 

Bristol City Council has made an urgent call to hoteliers, B&Bs, Airbnb owners and student housing providers to come forward to offer accommodation to house the city’s homeless during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

The Council is seeking around 450 rooms across the city to house rough sleepers and homeless people currently in shelters during the coronavirus crisis.

The Council says it is vital to get rough sleepers and homeless people into suitable accommodation in order for them to self-isolate.

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said: “We know how difficult it is for homeless people at the best of time, but if people are rough sleeping it is very hard to self-isolate. This is really worrying, and all of us need to pull together to protect the many vulnerable people in the city.

“We are now calling on hotels and B&B owners to step up to offer their help by opening their doors to the city’s homeless, so that we are able to provide the care and support they need in this time of crisis. I’d like to thank those who have already come forward and offered their support and hope to see others do the same in the coming days.”

Julian Higson, Director of Homes & Landlord Services, said: “It is vital and urgent that the homeless are able to self-isolate, and I’d encourage anyone who may be able to help with suitable accommodation to contact us as soon as possible. Business owners will be financially supported for offering this service and we will be in touch with them directly to make arrangements.”

The Council will work with clients to find accommodation that is suitable for each individual, as well as ensuring food and support needs are met.

All businesses and individuals who provide emergency accommodation will be compensated, and the Council hopes it will help businesses that have seen a reduction in demand because of the virus, protecting jobs and providing an income stream.

For more information and to contact Bristol City Council’s housing team, contact: covid19.accommodation@bristol.gov.uk.