Oxford West and Abingdon MP Layla Moran has today asked the Prime Minister to meet her and discuss the need to scrap the 1824 Vagrancy Act in light of new data showing that almost 600 homeless people died in 2017, with a further 1000 people dragged before the courts in the same year.
Layla has consistently been campaigning in Parliament to get the Vagrancy Act, a law that effectively criminalises rough sleeping, repealed, and recently brought a debate to the House of Commons that gained support from leading homeless charities and MPs from across the political spectrum.
“I have said time and again that homelessness is a cause of national shame, and these new figures show that to a shocking extent. In England we are still using the Dickensian Vagrancy Act to drag over 1000 people before our courts. This needs to change.
“Locally, I was devastated to hear that Oxford had the second highest rate of homeless deaths in England per 100,000 people in 2017. Therefore, I want to meet with the Prime Minister and take steps to end the homeless epidemic.
“So far I have taken this campaign from the streets of Oxford and the local On Your Doorstep campaign to receiving cross-party support and the support of homelessness charities, for which I am grateful. We are a rich, modern nation and the Conservatives need to do the right thing and back my campaign to scrap the Vagrancy Act.”