Homeless people in East London could be criminalised after a ban on anti-social behaviour was introduced.
Homeless People are Criminals in London Borough
The new Public Space Protection Order in Hackney will see police and council officers demanding people stop any activities considered anti-social, including begging and sleeping rough.
The Order covers Hackney Downs, London Fields, Broadway Market, Mare Street and Regents Canal.
Those considered breaking the rules could be given a £100 fixed penalty notice or fined up to £1,000.
Chief Executive of homelessness charity Crisis, Jon Sparkes, says: “Any moves to ban and criminalise rough sleeping will be counter-productive and only make it harder for people to access the dedicated support they need to move away from the streets for good.”1
Councillor Sophie Linden, Deputy Mayor, defends the ban: “We introduced this Order after trying for months to deal with anti-social behaviour in the area, including offering support, housing and advice to those that are persistently sleeping rough.
“Enforcement action will always be the last resort. We will continue to make sure anyone who is sleeping rough is offered professional help and support.”1
This news arrives after research found that a third of Londoners do not earn enough to afford a decent standard of living. An individual would need an income of £27,000 per year to comfortably rent a flat in the capital.