Kicked out for caring… the story of a Doorway guest

The following is an account of events that have taken place over the last week. It is written by one of our Support Workers who is very distressed and frustrated by what has occurred:

Guest S  has recently been evicted from Unity House, the reason, he had an unauthorised person in his room.

S, 20 years old, has been in care for most of his life and had taken pity on B, a 17 year old lad, who had also been evicted from Unity the previous week I believe for rent arrears.

The week B had been evicted the temperatures where below zero every evening.

I have since discovered that B has been arrested in Swindon for shoplifting.

S has been sofa surfing but has also been walking the streets  at night when unable to get in anywhere.

Yesterday he came to a recent drop-in session in a very dishevelled state, the worst I had ever seen him in.

He is usually the typical 20 year old, immaculately groomed with gel in his hair, not that day.

I have spoken to Wiltshire Council Housing Options who accept that they have a duty of care to him,  a rare admission.

However, it would be at least 4-5 days before they could find him anywhere.

Today is day 5 and despite numerous phone calls he is still waiting.

I have tried to speak to Unity House on numerous occasions on the phone only to get the answer phone every time.  

I have used several different phones, barred my number and unbarred it and still all I get is the answer phone.

I have left several messages over the period of 6 days, and to date they have not phoned me back.

Eventually, I phoned BCHA at Bournemouth and explained the problem to a very helpful lady, who within seconds put me through to Unity House and I was talking to a human being and not a machine.

Success you may think, but no, all I was quoted was Data Protection Act, Disclosure and no forms having been signed.

I did say that S had been sleeping rough, was with me and happy for me to discuss his case.

The person at Unity House refused to do this but did agree to speak to S on the phone. At the end of the conversation S asked her if she wanted to speak to me but she just ended the call.

S then went to Unity House, where the only advice he was given  was to go to the council.

I continue to work with S, but am very concerned about his health problems in the coming cold days.

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