Space for rough sleepers at Liverpool’s overnight shelter has been doubled to ensure enough room for anyone needing to stay.
Labre House, which is being run by The Whitechapel Centre on behalf of Liverpool City Council, has been seeing a “big increase” in demand during the cold weather.
The Camden Street centre, said to be the only one of its kind in the country which accepts everyone through its doors regardless of their circumstances, now has at least an extra 40 spaces.
An extra floor which was formerly used as storage space has been opened up this week, after work was carried out to clean and paint it and install new lighting.
Charlotte Joyce, service manager for The Whitechapel Centre, says: “There has been a big increase in demand at Labre House.
“Our teams are out on the streets every night letting rough sleepers know that there is somewhere for them to stay. We have also seen an increase in calls from concerned members of the public. On one evening we received 60 calls in two hours alerting us to people who may be at risk.”
Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson adds: “During the recent cold weather it made sense to expand the operation at Labre House to provide rough sleepers with immediate access to warmth, food and shelter in a central location. We also opened the extra floor to cope with potential increased demand.”
“Labre House is much more than just a place to spend the night. For its users, it is the first step out of the situation they find themselves in.
“We would like to thank those members of the public who have shown concern and alerted us to people who may need our help.
“The message from the council and its partners is a simple one: there is always room inside.”
Anyone concerned about a rough sleeper in Liverpool can call the Always Room Inside helpline on 0300 123 2041.