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Rishi Sunak ditches Suella Braverman's ban on tents for the homeless as ring-wing Tories revolt grows
14 November 2023, 16:21
Rishi Sunak has killed off Suella Braverman's proposed crackdown on homeless people sleeping in tents after sacking her as home secretary.
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Downing Street said it has shelved plans to fine charities who hand out tents to rough sleepers, as well as ban people from sleeping in tents in towns and cities.
She was slammed after claiming many people living on the streets were doing so as a "lifestyle choice".
But Mrs Braverman's ousting from Cabinet - which came after another row over her stance on pro-Palestinian protests - has infuriated the Tory Right.
She had insisted the Government could not "allow our streets to be taken over by rows of tents occupied by people, many of them from abroad, living on the streets as a lifestyle choice".
Mrs Braverman claimed that without action, British cities were at risk of ending up like San Francisco and Los Angeles where "weak policies have led to an explosion of crime, drug taking, and squalor.
"What I want to stop, and what the law abiding majority wants us to stop, is those who cause nuisance and distress to other people by pitching tents in public spaces, aggressively begging, stealing, taking drugs, littering, and blighting our communities," she said.
It was reported that Mrs Braverman had pitched the inclusion of tough new laws as part of the new Criminal Justice Bill, which was unveiled as part of the King's Speech last week.
This included a new civil penalty for charities to stop them giving out tents to homeless people for free, as well as a ban on tents in urban areas - except on people's own land.
The PM's official spokesman said: "It's not going to be introduced in the Criminal Justice Bill. I'm not aware of any plans for its introduction elsewhere."
Member of the Tory right have reacted furiously to yesterday's reshuffle.
One group of Braverman supporters - known as the New Conservatives - made a fierce intervention against what they view as the Prime Minister's 'centrist' shift.
In a statement they accused Mr Sunak of abandoning 'Red Wall' voters who delivered Boris Johnson's 80-seat majority at the 2019 general election.
Miriam Cates and Danny Kruger, the co-chairpeople of the group, warned the PM he was "walking away" from those voters who brought the Tories their victory four years ago.