Homeless individuals in Glasgow have shared that the issue escalated once again once Covid restrictions were eased and the lockdowns were lifted.

Gregg, whose current home is the city streets along with his 10-year-old dog Roxy, admitted to finding himself homeless after escaping from an abusive domestic situation.

He voiced his frustration saying, “During the Covid pandemic, they managed to tackle homelessness. But once Covid ceased to be a threat, they sent everyone back to the streets.”

“So, in reality, they’ve not eradicated anything. If there was an earnest desire to do so, they could take effective measures to eliminate homelessness and provide everyone with a place to live.”

Gregg, a man in his 60s originally from Norwich, moved to Scotland 14 years ago. Despite his circumstances, he commends Glasgow’s housing system for homeless individuals, criticising it to being superior to many other cities.

However, he also confessed that he believes the homelessness crisis has been ‘swept under the rug’.

Elsewhere on Buchanan Street, William Connally was found homeless after his recent release from prison and the loss of his flat.

He described the struggle stating, “Every shelter is at full capacity, I can’t find a place anywhere. All I see are waiting lists.”

“Such is life today. It’s tough, every day. Day in, day out.”

Reflecting on Scotland’s vacant homes, he mused, “These could be residences for 90,000 people, you know?”.

John, a resident from the south side of Glasgow, may no longer be homeless but he recalls his year on the streets between 2018 and 2019.

Currently, he does selfless work for the Scottish Tenants Organisation and helps them with their weekly outreach work in Glasgow city centre, sourcing food and water for homeless individuals, usually from local shops such as Greggs.

John unfolded his story stating, “I’ve been through tough days, and I distanced myself from my past life. Health problems put me on the street.”

He dishearteningly added, “So-called friends weren’t there when you needed them the most. However, there were many people who offered me a place to stay – a night here, a night there, especially during chilling nights.”

John was able to secure a home a few years back, a fact he considers himself ‘fortunate’ for.

When asked about his motivation for volunteering every week, John said: “Because I’ve been in the same position. Because I have a heart.”

“I didn’t choose to end up there and I understand there are a lot of others who also didn’t choose this life. They’re good hearted people. Nobody’s perfect.”

For those individuals who hold prejudice against the homeless, John commented: “There’s not much I can say to change their perception. All I can do is hope that they never find themselves in such a predicament.”