Wrexham's Poorest Criminalised – Beggar Belief

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  • #148894
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    Like most humane people Matt, I ignore the ignorant comments of people who try to compress a complex problem into a few glib phrases. That said, I think that you are on the wrong track. What you are missing here is a few greater good aspects of this issue. Firstly, whilst you write in a concerned way about people who are on the streets begging, you seem to ignore the weight of arguments emerging from the main national Charities about giving money to beggars in the street. Google the phrase ‘Charities against begging’ and see what comes up. There is an interesting piece of research in Northern Ireland (Belfast) for example and many Charities make the persuasive case that giving money actually incentivises all sorts of bad practice not the least drug consumption and dealing. Most Charities suggest giving time and advice to those who beg. Secondly, you seem to be totally ignoring the wider ramifications of begging upon the wealth of a town like Wrexham and the job prospects therein. Businesses are being really damaged by the range of street negatives, shoppers and tourists are being put off coming to Wrexham, and the begging proliferation will cause more job losses and more job layoffs. Even a superficial glance of social media will tell you all you need to know about people coming into Wrexham because of anti-social street occurrences. There is a vicious circle now in play, people are being emboldened in their begging and whilst I have every sympathy with those who hit hard times, we should never tolerate the intolerable

    #148914

    bubble
    Participant

    I don’t think it would be Wrexham Council’s and/or Police’s fault for criminalising such people. If they are breaking the law (I’ve no idea whether they actually are though) then they are criminalising themselves. There are other penalties besides fines – e.g. community sentences (e.g. picking up litter).

    I’m actually an extremely compassionate person; e.g. I hold liberal values, am fiercely defensive of others when it comes to homosexuality, gender reassignment, free speech and freedom of expression, freedom to follow whichever religion one chooses (or none). But due to a very bad and prolonged personal experience with drug addicts & alcoholics, I have very little patience with them. I no longer feel able to give them the benefit of the doubt. I think there is a case for some “tough love” when it comes to such people. If I break the law it is only fair that I face the consequences; why should it be any different for anyone else, be they politicians, royalty, or beggars and/or people with substance abuse issues?

    Overall though, I wouldn’t worry about it. Like much of Wrexham Council’s (& NW Police’s) initiatives, it will be a flash in the pan. The announcement is basically propaganda designed to make the public believe that something constructive and effective is being done, but in reality it won’t get the funds or commitment to stay the course. e.g. what improvements has the PSPO brought? Look at the fanfare over Tŷ Pawb but despite the long lead-time they haven’t even come up with a meaningful website. Rhosddu. Bus station. Electronic bus stop signs. Bus services. As for the “third sector agencies”, who are they and what have they been doing so far?

    We voted these councillors in and we have got the Wrexham we deserve. I doubt that things will ever really change. IMHO, Wrexham is simply sh*t. I buy lottery tickets specifically because I believe that they offer me the only hope I have to escape from this hole.

    #148927

    Council Watcher
    Participant

    A Lottery win and an escape from Wrexham may be a solution for you to the local issue but tell us which town or city are you going to move to that does not have the issue of street beggars- this has become as common these days as it was in Victorian Britain. In Victorian times they developed the workhouse to clear the streets – is that what we need to go back to- I’m sure not.

    There are two clear issues re the beggers that need to be addressed 1) What services do you have in place to support these people off the street into a substance-free lifestyle (not all beggers are substance users through) suitable accommodation and training and a job. If you actually talk to many of the beggars that is something they would aspire to. the 2nd point to address is what are the causes of someone ending up on the street and is there anything that can be done to stop it happening again. Without the root causes being tackled beggers and street drug use will remain.

    #149016
    Sheefag
    Sheefag
    Participant

    This all very nice and noble but the tune would soon change if they started hanging around your houses.

    #149075

    Matt
    Participant

    I think you have to view businesses in some respects as genuinely at odds with homelessness. It would be a fair assessment to say they are not compatible cohabitants due to many of the objections raised in this thread – putting across the argument that they need some place to go – that is not prison (as this would cost taxpayers money anyway).

    Seattle has taken the bold move to tax large businesses to help fund affordable housing and homeless services.
    The likes of Amazon and Starbucks who rake in billions of dollars of profit globally every year and try to pay as little in corporation tax as possible are complaining and begrudging giving money to those most needy in society. The 1% trying to increase wealth and snub the 99%. They view funding as a hindrance, yet they would benefit from the streets being clear of homeless people – either successfully housed or in centres away from outside of their places of businesses. Those successfully housed would also potentially be able to go into a workforce for them and help them with expansion plans. A distinct lack of ethical morals and not wanting to pay workers a fair wage for a fair day’s work is what is preventing them from behaving with any kind of decency.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-44124326

    I don’t think you would expect many businesses (if any) to pay for homeless support in Wrexham (beyond money going from Business Rates back into WAG initiatives). But as this is a national problem and we are supposedly one of the most economically prosperous countries in the world, we should be diverting a certain level of “cream on the top” money to taking people off the streets, rather than inflating already bloated bank accounts and then everyone is happy. Yes, yes, socialist view blah blah blah. I just can’t see how removing someone from the high street repeatedly is the right answer for them to go back and generate further nuisance as it were.

    #149079

    wrexview
    Participant

    A group of about a dozen hanging about outside Richmond House yesterday, some standing around the traffic lights, intimidating for pedestrians. Some seemed unaware of their surroundings , others were sitting on the floor smoking, a mixed group of men and women. Do they live in Richmond House and are turned out during the day or are they people just using the site as a gathering point ?

    #149086
    Sheefag
    Sheefag
    Participant

    So Matt, you’re basically saying that the people shitting on Alun’s record shop doorstep are just ‘sticking it to the man’?

    #149088

    Matt
    Participant

    So Matt, you’re basically saying that the people shitting on Alun’s record shop doorstep are just ‘sticking it to the man’?

    Please refer to my previous post.

    Alun, I completely understand that there is persistent nuisance behaviour that is carried out by those that fit into a “vagrant” profile that should not be tolerated around local business areas or anywhere residential, such as shoplifting, public defecation/urination, discarding of used needles, aggressive and threatening behaviour etc… Those are all clear criminal actions that can harm other members of the public and can be dealt with accordingly like they have done so in the past using ASBOs and town centre exclusion orders. Nobody should have to put up with anyone behaving in a nasty and intolerable way. There’s no disputing that.

    My original starting post point was that I didn’t think that arresting and fining homeless people for the act of begging was the most effective deterrent or best use of police time for clearing out the town centre. I still don’t.

    My latter post most recently about the example in Seattle is an initiative where positive steps and money has been used to try and combat the issue of homelessness. It’s not my fault that the likes of Amazon and Starbucks have opted to act like Big Time Charlie’s over it is it? Had they actually got on board with something for once, we’d all be applauding it.

    #149091
    Sheefag
    Sheefag
    Participant

    So, Amazon and Starbucks are the reason that people shit on Alun’s doorstep?

    Wrexham, the capital of ‘Citizen Smith’ stylee defection. Ty Pawb could exhibit this under the banner of ‘Performance Arse’.

    #149092

    Matt
    Participant

    So, Amazon and Starbucks are the reason that people shit on Alun’s doorstep?

    Wrexham, the capital of ‘Citizen Smith’ stylee defection. Ty Pawb could exhibit this under the banner of ‘Performance Arse’.

    This is actually a very funny conversation, you have been missed recently Sheefag. No-one agrees with anybody shitting on Alun’s doorstep. I had already discussed earlier that this type of behaviour is unacceptable.

    I could have perhaps phrased it better, I meant that businesses and homelessness in the same area don’t mix as ultimately it is going to have a negative effect on business – such as someone perhaps shitting on Alun’s doorstep.

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