Street begging doesn’t look like the sort of thing people do by choice. But for some, it’s the reality at the bottom of the cliff.
As well as a meagre source of income, it can fulfil needs, including the need for social interaction. Like everywhere, begging in our city is a complicated issue. Whatever a person’s reasons and manner, the decision by our council to place private security personnel does not sit well.
Our city hosts do a fantastic job helping people stay safe at night. But using them for standover tactics to stop people giving money is no solution. It takes away the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff and replaces it with a rather hard landing.
If I were on council, I would have advocated for better investment in mental health at the top of the cliff, and a bit more creativity at the bottom.
Brent Barrett Palmerston North