Frequently Asked Questions (these have been developed from enquires received by Gosport Borough Council):
What are the council doing to support rough sleepers?
Gosport Borough Council Officer’s carry out health and wellbeing checks for individuals at least once a week (this may be increased staff permitting). They inform rough sleepers of the support that is available to them however not all choose to take up this support.
Housing Drop In service is available at Gosport Town Hall from 09:00 – 17:00 Monday – Friday.
If an individual presents to Housing Drop In and is established to have a priority need the applicant can be placed in emergency accommodation.
There are various funds to help relieve homelessness that Housing can use including the Rough Sleepers Grant, which is a grant not a loan, to enable singles/couples that are homeless but not in priority need to secure a room to rent in the private sector.
Why are rough sleepers allowed to occupy doorways along the High Street?
If an individual is on Gosport Borough Council land an application to Court for an order to remove them may be sought. If a rough sleeper is on private land the Council and Police have no powers to move a person on. The Council will however make contact with the relevant land owner to request support in moving rough sleepers on in the hope that they may engage with services.
Can the Council remove rough sleeper’s possessions if they have spilled onto the High Street?
No, the High Street is owned by Hampshire County Council Highway Authority. Hampshire County Council may take action if access along the High Street is being obstructed.
What powers are in place to stop begging?
A Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) was implemented last year. Individuals must, if required by an authorised Gosport Borough Council Officer, Police Community Support Officer or Police Officer, cease engaging in the following activities:
- Begging and causing Anti-Social Behaviour
- Drinking alcohol and causing Anti-Social Behaviour
- Using drugs and causing Anti-Social Behaviour
- Urinating or defecating in a public place
They may also be asked to hand over alcohol, alcohol containers, drugs or drug paraphernalia and disperse from a public place and not return there for up to 12 hours.
It is a criminal offence to fail, without reasonable excuse, to comply with any of the PSPO restrictions within the restricted area, map below. The maximum fine on conviction is £1,000.
To report breaches of the PSPO please call 101.