Cllr Dave Bryant has been quoted as suggesting specially demarcated areas for beggars and also having a card system for beggars.
Articles of Interest: Cllr Bryant lands in hot water because of misquote
Cllr Bryant has confirmed that he said no such thing. These quotes have been taken out of context by an enterprising journalist who managed to get their hands on minutes of a meeting earlier this year. The meeting was convened by Cllr Bryant to consider the apparent increase in “aggressive begging”. Hannes and Greg were present, amongst others.
At the meeting, it was suggested that targeting certain kinds of begging as criminal assumed the legitimacy of ‘ordinary’ begging but that the City’s approach was effectively criminalising legal begging. The meeting considered possible ways to lend legitimacy to beggars who have no criminal intent. In the course of that discussion several suggestions were toyed with and ultimately dismissed.
Having the discussion move from a punitive response toward “aggressive begging” to discussing how begging has been unfairly criminalised is a move in the right direction.
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