OPPOSITION COUNCILLORS CALL FOR ACTION OVER SLEEPING BAG SCANDAL AS ‘APPRENTICE’ STAR SAYS : “WE NEED A COMPASSIONATE APPROACH NOT A TICK-BOX ONE”

Conservative Cllr Tim Briggs – the only blue on Lambeth council – has joined Green party councillors in calling for action in the wake of revelations that Lambeth council staff removed a sleeping bag from a rough sleeper – to the fury of ‘Apprentice’ winner Michelle Dewberry who witnessed- and videoed -the incident.

Cllr Briggs told News From Crystal Palace: “This happened in my Clapham Common ward. “I had no idea that the Labour councillors were doing this. “I am disgusted that Labour councillors could choose to do this to people who are completely vulnerable and down on their luck. “I will be writing to the leader of the council to ensure that this disgraceful policy is reversed.

“In our manifesto we pledged at Paragraph 6.2 for all people who are homeless to have a bed for the night in unused council-owned property until the Homelessness Reduction Act in implemented in Lambeth. “Shame that Labour councillors have lifted so many Conservative policies from our manifesto but failed to take on board any of the decency and kindness needed to lead a community.”

The video, which has brought Lambeth council nationwide coverage, had been viewed 155,000 times shortly after midday today (Monday).

Lambeth council’s first response on Twitter on November 1st to Michelle Dewberry from an unnamed source within the council reads as follows:

New conversation Lambeth Council‏Verified account @lambeth_council Nov 1 Replying to @MichelleDewbs

(1/3) Hi Michelle, we appreciate your concern for the person who was sleeping here. This man has been sleeping at this location every night for several weeks. As with all people who sleep rough in our parks, we engage with them continually,

Replying to @lambeth_council @MichelleDewbs

(2/3) but he has turned down all of our offers of assistance, such as hostel accommodation. We’ve said to him several times that if he continues to leave his things there we’d remove them.

Lambeth Council‏Verified account @lambeth_council Nov 1

Replying to @lambeth_council @MichelleDewbs

(3/3) That was carried out today. Our outreach team have been informed of his situation and will continue to try and support him.

Michelle Dewberry‏Verified account @MichelleDewbs Nov 1 Replying to @lambeth_council

You could remove someone’s things in a different way, if you feel that it’s essential. You could have removed them for temporary safe keeping & let him know where to find them. Binning them is heartless-You know that as well as I. We need compassionate approach, not tick-box one

BUT THEN LAMBETH CHANGED THEIR TUNE COMPLETELY. HERE COMES THE SPIN:

This appeared on Lambeth Labour party Twitter on Sunday. Oddly, News From Crystal Palace could not find the same Tweet on lambeth.gov…..

Lambeth Council‏Verified account @lambeth_council Nov 2 Replying to @MichelleDewbs @jon_bartley @cllrpeck

Thanks for your concern about this. @Cllrpeck has asked officers to investigate this. We can assure you that the person is staying at one of our hostels and has been supported by our rough sleeping team. We understand that only items he no longer wanted were discarded

Other Tweets say:

Lambeth Council‏Verified account @lambeth_council Nov 2 Replying to @MichelleDewbs

Hi Michelle, a quick update on this, we can confirm that the individual is now living in a hostel in the borough thanks to the work of our outreach team. He informed us that he took all the possessions he wanted with him, and that the items he left were no longer needed.

Lambeth Council‏Verified account @lambeth_council Nov 2 Replying to @MichelleDewbs @jon_bartley @cllrpeck

Thanks for your concern about this. @Cllrpeck has asked officers to investigate this. We can assure you that the person is staying at one of our hostels and has been supported by our rough sleeping team. We understand that only items he no longer wanted were discarded

November 2nd: Replying to @groomos @empireofthekop @lambeth_council

Well, if I was leader of the council, I’d do this… – provide lockers – partner with a local shelter to identity genuine homeless – provide access to the lockers as storage during their transition to homes What I wouldn’t do, is bin likely the only thing keeping them warm

A Lambeth Council spokesman said: “We can confirm that the individual is now living in a hostel in the borough thanks to the work of our outreach team. He informed us that he took all the possessions he wanted with him, and that the items he left were no longer needed.

“Lambeth does a huge amount of work to help vulnerable people who find themselves at threat from homelessness or find themselves sleeping rough. We have a rough sleeping team that is out day and night providing support to those in need, to ensure that they don’t have to resort to sleeping outside.”

Further reading on this website:

‘APPRENTICE’ WINNER BUYS BLANKETS FOR HOMELESS MAN – AFTER LAMBETH COUNCIL CONFISCATE HIS SLEEPING BAG / CALL FOR INVESTIGATION BY OUTRAGED GREEN PARTY LEADER: “LAMBETH COUNCIL SHOULD NOT BE SEEKING TO JUSTIFY THIS ACTION” – November 2nd

APPRENTICE WINNER SLAMS LAMBETH’S TREATMENT OF HOMELESS PERSON – OFFERS TO MEET COUNCIL LEADER TO SHARE IDEAS – More than 125,000 views on Twitter – November 2nd

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