TODAY we have highlighted the plight of the homeless across Brighton and Hove, and Sussex.

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism has produced important work to demonstrate the problem across the country, and it should worry us all.

Its researchers found some 449 deaths due to homelessness and rough sleeping across the country in the past year.

It ranges from drug and alcohol problems, to the associated stresses, mental health difficulties, and other health problems which homelessness can cause.

Behind every person who is sleeping rough, or having to find what shelter they can on a friend’s sofa or in a hostel or bed and breakfast, there is a human being.

They have fallen into difficulty, but so might any of us when we face tough moments in our lives.

A truly caring society is one which looks out for its worst off citizens, and those who are at the bottom of the pile.

Councillors have pledged to end rough sleeping by 2020. This is a noble ambition, and in previous years we have seen the real difference being made by the city council and by numerous charities, volunteers, and fundraisers.

For example, the Brighton Centre has been opened on cold winter nights to give shelter from the cold, while churches and charities also do a great deal.

But we must also ensure that these bold targets are met. We are used to politicians across the spectrum making pledges set against future dates.

There are no pledges they can keep that can be more important than this one.

As a society, we should all do what we can do help to make sure the pledge is met.