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Communication with Grenfell Tower victims must be improved, says Kensington MP

Newly-elected Labour MP Emma Dent Coad says she has heard reports of people “sleeping rough”.

The co-ordination of the response to the Grenfell Tower fire is “appalling” and communication must be improved, the MP for Kensington has claimed.

Newly-elected Labour MP Emma Dent Coad said people were still “running around like headless chickens” as she called for more ways of “communicating what is going on because I don’t know”.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s World At One programme, Ms Dent Coad said some survivors were too scared to come forward.

“I’ve been hearing countless reports (that) people are sleeping rough – despicable after what they’ve been through.

“And some of them may just be worried their papers are going through or they haven’t had papers, whatever it may be. A lot of people are concerned about benefit – if they are getting lump sums of money if that’s going to affect their benefits; we’ve had that confirmed this morning that that’s not going to have any effect at all.

“How we get the word out about that is another matter altogether, because even I as their MP going round the streets have people pleading to me for help – I still don’t have the contacts that I need to point people in the right direction.”

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Emma Dent Coad and Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn near Grenfell Tower ( Alastair Grant/AP)

She said there needed to be “better communication” of what is going on in “countless different ways” because the “word is not getting out there”.

Ms Dent Coad said: “All neighbouring boroughs, all across London, are sending officers in.

“The co-ordination is appalling. Somebody told me this morning they are still this morning running around like headless chickens – that was something somebody from the inside (said).”

She also called for more help from the Red Cross, which she said was more trusted than the council and had helped to “stabilise” the situation.

“They are trusted – a lot of people don’t trust the council because of what’s happened … The Red Cross are trusted and if there’s any way of getting more people down to help I think that would be a good thing.”

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