Protestors march in city centre after four homeless people die in two weeks
- Activists take to streets after deaths of four homeless people in two weeks
- Protesters shout “No more deaths on our streets'
- Northern Quota hears stories of those who have survived on the streets
Activists marched through Manchester city centre calling on the council to do more to combat the crisis of homelessness.
The 50-strong march was made up of members of the homeless community and activists, as well as friends and families offering support.
The majority of people taking part in the demonstration were or had been homeless.
Organiser Andy Cullen said: “We do not want our citizens dying on our streets. This is Manchester.”
Beginning the march at Piccadilly Gardens, the group made their way to St Peter’s Square before gathering outside the town hall. Police prevented the march from going any further, so the march was re-directed to the office of Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham.
Demonstrators aimed to raise awareness for those living at the edge of society. Members carried sleeping bags, which they distributed to homeless people they came across living on the street. Passersby stopped to observe the march and traffic was brought to a halt for the duration.
The crowd was heard to be chanting: ‘No more deaths on our streets!’
The march caused the temporary disruption of traffic. Calls for direct action were made outside the office of Mr Burnham, in light of failures to record the recent number of homeless deaths in Manchester.
Caitlin Mclaughlin, formerly a rough sleeper, said she had survived on the streets before finding sanctuary at a hostel. She now works to help get others off the streets.
SPIN co-founder, John Bennett stated: “We decided if we could ever do it, we would give something back together”.
The charity Supporting People in Need actively helps rough sleepers in Manchester.