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Thanet, Medway and Canterbury councils announce SWEPs for freezing temperatures

Councils are preparing to give rough sleepers accommodation as temperatures plummet this weekend.

The thermometer is expected to give sub-zero readings, forcing gritters out onto Kent's roads this evening.

Rough sleepers will be offered shelter this weekend. Stock image
Rough sleepers will be offered shelter this weekend. Stock image

Emergency action to protect the homeless is taken when it is forecast to go to zero Celsius or below for three consecutive nights.

Canterbury City, Thanet District and Medway Councils have already put in place a severe weather emergency protocol (SWEP).

The Canterbury authority says it is offering both bed and breakfast or temporary housing and is liaising with the charities Catching Lives and Porchlight.

A tweet from the council said today: "To let us know about a rough sleeper who you believe is in need of assistance, please call us."

The number is 01227 781879 and the line is open 24 hours a day.

Thanet began its SWEP yesterday after the Met Office predicted three nights of temperatures below zero from yesterday.

The authority said on Facebook: "Our SWEP policy aims to ensure the safety and wellbeing of anybody we believe to be rough sleeping.

"We are working closely with the RISE rough sleeping outreach team to ensure that any people that we know are rough sleepers are proactively contacted and offered a warm place to stay during this cold snap."

The authority wants people who know of rough sleepers to call its all-hours number 01843 577000.

Medway Council also announced its SWEP yesterday.

It is providingemergency accommodation through the council's out-of-hours homelessness service, which can be contacted on 01634 304400.

Read more: All the latest news from Canterbury

Read more: All the latest news from Medway

Read more:All the latest news from Thanet

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