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Are sheets laundered daily and bedding laundered twice weekly? Are there separate sleeping areas for men and women? Are guest menus varied and healthy?
These are just three of the questions that night shelter providers should be asking themselves, according to a new set of guidelines being drawn up by Housing Justice.
Plans for the Night Shelter Quality Mark scheme, which is yet to launch, were announced at the inaugural National Night Shelters Conference, organised by Housing Justice, which took place on 23 October.
The Quality Mark is likely to cover areas as diverse as risk assessments, facilities and equipment, health and safety, policies and procedures, staff and volunteers, admissions and referrals, and communication and feedback.
At the conference, response to the Quality Mark scheme seemed positive, with some night shelter representatives expressing an interest in being involved in the pilot.
However, at least one attendee was concerned they wouldn’t be able to meet all the criteria.
Housing Justice claimed the guidelines are more about ‘best practice’ than prescriptive regulations.