Rough sleeping

What to do if you are rough sleeping or are aware of somebody rough sleeping

If you are homeless and have nowhere to sleep tonight (after 5pm), please call the Haringey Council out-of-hours service on 020 8489 1000.

Those who are rough sleeping and who need additional support will receive a warm welcome at Mulberry Junction, our dedicated resource centre for single people affected by homelessness, Monday to Friday between the hours of 8.15am and 4pm.

You can alert the local authority and outreach services of someone who is rough sleeping by making a referral to Streetlink (external link) on 0300 500 0914.

StreetLink is run by Homeless Link and is the main way the public can let us know about someone they are concerned about who is sleeping rough.

By using StreetLink, members of the public can alert local authorities and homelessness organisations to people sleeping rough in their area. This information helps the outreach teams to locate people and connect them with local services available to help them off the streets.

You can also support or advise the person to present as someone who is experiencing homelessness at a customer service centre at either Wood Green Library or Marcus Garvey Library.

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Rough sleeping in severe weather

Haringey has a severe weather emergency protocol (SWEP) that is triggered during periods of severe weather, providing shelter to people that are rough sleeping in the borough.

SWEP will be activated during days of severe weather which include but are not limited to:

  • when the Met Office forecasts a temperature drop of zero degrees celsius or below
  • where there is heavy or prolonged rainfall that presents a flood risk
  • where there are gale-force winds that increase the risk of uprooted trees, falling debris etc

Access to the provision is via the outreach team. If you are concerned about someone who is sleeping rough during severe weather, please refer them to Streetlink (external link).

SWEP provision

In Haringey, cold-weather SWEP provision will be within existing supported housing services. Organisations and services work creatively to provide emergency accommodation.

Due to the unplanned and short-term nature of the provision, this will be in the form of camp beds, mattresses or chairs which may be within communal spaces or spare rooms.

To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, SWEP accommodation will only be in shared sleeping spaces where there is no alternative.

The hot weather protocol

As a partnership, we are committed to making sure anyone rough sleeping in Haringey can access shade, water, and sun cream during hot weather to protect themselves from the heat. We recognise this as a preventative measure to safeguard vulnerable adults at risk.

As with severe cold weather, very hot weather can considerably increase the risk to a person who is rough sleeping and who does not have access to basic facilities. Very high temperatures can cause dehydration, confusion, and sunstroke as well as complications to existing medical conditions.

The Haringey street outreach team will work with all people who are street homeless and are supported to access summer provision to identify relevant support and/or signposting available to end their homelessness if this is not already in progress.

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Rough sleeping services

Haringey provides several specialist services, meeting the needs of people affected by street homelessness:

Mulberry Junction

Mulberry Junction, is Haringey’s dedicated resource centre in Tottenham for single people affected by, or at risk of, homelessness.

Mulberry Junction provides on-the-spot housing advice, and health and wellbeing support to single adults affected by homelessness in Haringey.

You can visit us at 332 High Road in Tottenham, N15 4BN. Guests will be able to access the COVID-safe service on a drop-in basis: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8.15am to 12pm.

On Thursday afternoons from 1pm to 4pm, the service hosts our safe space for women, Women-Only One-Stop Hub (WOOSH), and you're welcome to attend.

Drop-in appointments are available, or you can email us at to book your appointment.

Outreach services

Specialist services

Night shelters

Please note: Public Health England has advised that night shelters with shared sleeping facilities should remain closed due to the ongoing risks posed by COVID-19. We are working with our partners to reinstate an emergency accommodation service as soon as possible.

Emergency help is available. Please contact:


If you are finding it hard to afford food, the Haringey Food Network (external link) and Connected Communities have support available. There are also food banks, school meals, and support for pregnant residents across Haringey.

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Related News Stories

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How we gather data and co-produce evidence

The Council uses the Combined Homelessness and Information Network (CHAIN) to monitor numbers of people seen bedded down across each month in the borough.

You can access Borough-level and London-wide quarterly and annual reports at London Datastore (external link)

CHAIN is a multi-agency database run by Homeless Link that is used pan-London. More information can be found here on the Homeless Link website (external link).

In Haringey, we also undertake bi-monthly street counts using an evidence-based estimate with a spotlight count approach. This involves completing a snapshot survey of the number of people known to be sleeping out on a ‘typical night’ of the given month.

While we acknowledge that street counts only represent a partial picture of rough sleeping, it is useful as part of a toolbox of other data collection and mapping methods. This information is incorporated into our Borough Plan 2019-2023, which sets out our priorities for housing and homelessness in Haringey.

The description of rough sleeping which has been used most routinely for national statistics since 2010 defines rough sleeping as:

People sleeping, about to bed down (sitting on/in or standing next to their bedding) or actually bedded down in the open air (such as on the streets, in tents, doorways, parks, bus shelters or encampments). People in buildings or other places not designed for habitation (such as stairwells, barns, sheds, car parks, cars, derelict boats, stations, or 'bashes' which are makeshift shelters, often comprised of cardboard boxes)

Haringey recognises that the definition of rough sleeping excludes key places and situations that minoritised groups typically rough sleep in, obscuring their lived experience and their statistical presence in the national picture.

Haringey is committed to tackling this and incorporating the views of those with lived experience into our data collection and monitoring methods for our rough sleeping strategy, which is currently in development.

Between November 2021 and May 2022, Arts and Homelessness International, members of staff from across the council and people with lived experience of homelessness worked together to create an original play based on their real experiences.

The Legislative Theatre performance, and the work of the steering group since, have laid the foundation of this strategy. We are proud that this strategy is a collaboration between Haringey Council, Arts and Homelessness International, and the people we work to support.

The co-creation of this strategy both celebrates and builds on our council’s ongoing commitment to improving homelessness services through embedding co-production into our practices.

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Page last updated:

April 4, 2023

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