45 homeless people died in Glasgow last year, according to official stats

The Glasgow City Mission's Winter Night Shelter in Glasgow is open between December and March and can accommodate up to 40 people.
The Glasgow City Mission's Winter Night Shelter in Glasgow is open between December and March and can accommodate up to 40 people.
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A total of 45 homeless people died in Glasgow last year, according to official statistics.

Of those, 43 (95 per cent) were living in temporary accommodation at the time of their deaths, figures from Glasgow's Health and Social Care Partnership showed.

The council and health board body said the majority of the deaths were due to complex health issues often associated with previous or current addiction, including mental health, with a smaller number recorded as drugs deaths.

There were 17 occasions when a person who had used drugs was revived from an overdose during a four-month period at Glasgow's Winter Night Shelter.

• READ MORE: Homelessness having 'devastating impact' on rising numbers of people in Scotland
The centre, open between December and March, is run by Glasgow City Mission and can accommodate up to 40 people.

Staff at the shelter who are trained in the use of naloxone - a drug which can revive people experiencing potentially fatal overdoses - used it 17 times at the site between December and March last year.

Scotland suffered a record number of drugs deaths in 2018, with 1,187 across the country and 280 (24 per cent) of those in Glasgow.

At the latest official count, 29 people are estimated to be sleeping rough in the city.

Susanne Millar, interim chief officer of Glasgow's Health and Social Care Partnership, said: "Many of our service users who died had previous or existing addiction issues, some also with significant mental health needs.

"It is the complexity of those needs which contributed to their deaths, rather than issues relating to their housing status."

She added: "The number of lives potentially saved at the Winter Night Shelter demonstrates the scale of the problem.

"Unfortunately, this heartbreaking reality is replicated in our other homelessness services, too.

"It is emotionally difficult for staff and trained volunteers at the night shelter who work closely with service users and whom I'd personally like to thank for their dedication and professionalism in these difficult circumstances."