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The Duke of Cambridge: “We are in a life and death fight to help those people living on the streets in this public health emergency”


Photo: @KensingtonRoyal/Instagram

The Duke of Cambridge has been talking with his patronage, The Passage, to discuss how best to help people living with homelessness during the coronavirus outbreak.

On Wednesday, William called The Passage’s CEO, Mick Clarke, who relayed his message in an article in the Evening Standard. The message: help 600 people in London find places to sleep.  

William reportedly told Clarke, “We are in a life and death fight to help those people living on the streets in this public health emergency.”

Clarke confirmed and said that “We don’t want to get 80 per cent of people off the streets only to return them when this crisis is over. The Duke was very keen for us to explore ways to avoid that happening.”

Clarke continued:  

“We had 20-minute conservation and he recognised that is a public health emergency for those who are on the streets and in shelters.

“So it was good to tell him that everyone in the voluntary sector but also local and central government is doing everything that they can to try and get people off the streets and into places of safety.

“Hotel chains have really stepped up and have offered hundreds of places for the homeless.

“The Intercontinental Group, including Holiday Inn, have been great, but we need more clean clothes for those who have been rehoused and mobile phones so we can keep in touch with.”

Prince William launched a charity appeal for the National Emergencies Trust last week, calling for donations to help those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In a week, the appeal raised £11 million.

William and Kate also visited NHS phoneline workers at the London Ambulance Centre in Croydon to hear how they’re helping the public during this crisis; and shared a video of their children clapping for carers.

The Duke of Cambridge became The Passage’s Royal Patron in 2019 but has a long connection with the charity, having visited with his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1993, and made several public and private visits in the years since.

“The visits I made as a child to this place left a deep and lasting impression upon me – about how important it is to ensure that everyone in our society, especially the poorest, are treated with respect, dignity and kindness, and are given the opportunities to fulfill their potential in life,” William said about The Passage in 2016.



About author

Jess is a communications professional and freelance writer who lives in Halifax and has a passion for all things royal, particularly the British Royal Family.